ThoughtRiver, a London-based legaltech start-up that’s using AI to speed up agreement pre-screening, has announced a $10 million Series A round of funding led by Octopus Ventures. Existing seed financiers Crane, Resident World, Entrée Capital, Distribute Space, and angel investor Duncan Painter likewise participated in the round.
The UK start-up is among a number applying AI to automate work that would otherwise be done by legal professions with the objective of improving operational efficiency. Other startups playing in the area include the likes of Kira Systems, LawGeex and Luminance to name a few.
ThoughtRiver argues it has a various focus vs most of agreement view companies due to the fact that it’s concentrating on pre-signature contracts– with the aim of making protecting an offer quicker. “Practically all others are just used to pull data from existing agreements. ThoughtRiver is as much in need by Sales teams as it is by Legal,” a spokesperson informed us.
The Series An investment follows twelve month’s of what it’s billed as substantial growth for the 2015-founded start-up, which states its automated contract review software is now being utilized by the likes of G4S, Singtel and DB Schenker. It introduced a service at the end of 2017 and now has more than 25 clients all over the world, per the representative.
It also trumpets inking a strategic collaboration with expert services firm PwC– which will see the latter developing a service for its customers powered by ThoughtRiver’s software application, according to a press release.
ThoughtRiver touts approximately 95% in time and 80% in expense savings vs a preliminary contract review that’s performed by in-house attorneys. And ‘faster contract reviews sum to increased deal flow speed’ is its overarching claim.
On the tech side, ThoughtRiver has developed an ontology of contract legal logic, couched as a series of in-depth questions which, integrated with its natural language processing (NLP) engine, allows its software application to pre-screen agreements by generating a danger evaluation. It will likewise suggest tweaks to the legalese to remediate problems, including through a plug-in for Microsoft Word, where consumers’ in-house lawyers might prefer to work.
Other advantages the start-up touts are data extraction to power agreement analytics at scale– such as for due diligence or to examine the effect of regulatory change. Its sale pitch likewise suggests that simple access to an overview of legal positions assists consumers by making it possible for better-informed business relationships.