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“Technology is no longer a fringe consideration for lawyers” says A&O Head of Fuse

Shruti Ajitsaria, partner and Head of Fuse (A&O’s tech innovation hub) has said that technology is now at the top of the agenda for law firm management, and continues to be central to the future of law firms.

As Fuse today announced the launch of its fifth cohort, Shruti said: “We have all now seen the impact technology has on the way lawyers work, and the vital role its use will play in the future of law firms. Technology is no longer a fringe consideration for lawyers. For firms to thrive and provide the best service to clients, they need to develop a deep understanding of different technologies, not only to enable deployment of more efficient tools, but also to identify emerging areas of law on which they should be focusing.”

Data from A&O's market-first legal innovation benchmarking report suggests that clients are placing increased emphasis on innovation, and expect their external counsel to do the same. As demand from clients to receive legal services in new and flexible ways grows, A&O is seeking to match those ambitions.

Since opening in 2017, Fuse has engaged with over 10,000 external visitors, and has now launched its fifth cohort virtually. Each new cohort brings a range of companies into Fuse, with the primary aim of creating a multidisciplinary environment in which cohort members, clients and A&O lawyers can test solutions that bring together world-class legal analysis with best-in-class technology.

Joining Fuse alumni Avvoka, Define, Legatics and StructureFlow, the new LegalTech companies in residence are:

Atticus - makes the process of verification more efficient, whilst also reducing risk with clear protocols and version control and improving the experience of verification for all stakeholders.

CiteRight – helps litigation teams by making it easy to create a library of reusable research and court submission materials on its collaboration platform.

Draftwise – helps lawyers to draft new contracts, quickly find relevant precedents and manage preferred clauses and defined terms, all within Microsoft Word.

Greenomy - simplifies the process for achieving continuous compliance with ESG and sustainability regulatory disclosure requirements.

Humanloop – helps lawyers to rapidly train AI systems that can classify contracts or extract key information from documents.

For the second time in Fuse, six new FinTech residents have also been chosen in collaboration with some of A&O's clients.

The new FinTech companies are:

Amplifi – helps internal legal teams objectively assess and simplify the language used in contracts and other legal documents.

Arteria – helps organisations contract faster and turn executed contracts into data by applying artificial intelligence and a data-first approach to the drafting, negotiation and analysis of contracts.

Elliptic – helps law firms with forensic investigations on cryptocurrency transactions. It also provides due diligence on Virtual Asset Providers and consultations on crypto compliance.

Liquidly – helps private banks and fund managers to provide investors with the option for liquidity by building custom, closed marketplaces.

Solidatus – helps lawyers and legal professionals to link documents, data, process, policy, regulation and people to provide a holistic, actionable organisational blueprint.

Vault Platform – helps lawyers and other investigating parties take an innovative approach to increasing the quality of misconduct reporting and resolution. Vault provides an auditable, centralised system of record for all misconduct reported to the company.

Shruti Ajitsaria continued: “Fuse is unique in bringing together a diverse group of leading LegalTech and FinTech companies, creating a community geared towards tackling the biggest issues in today's increasingly complex legal, regulatory and dealmaking environment." 

At A&O we get to test and work with emerging technology companies through Fuse, while also developing solutions internally. We have seen first-hand the benefits that LegalTech can have on the work our lawyers are doing, and are committed to leading from the front by serving our clients in new and better ways.

Shruti Ajitsaria, Head of Fuse