Autto, the legal workflow automation platform, has taken a $650,000 investment from Angel investors and US-based ALSP, Tangible, previously known as the Ashe Legal Group, which offers a combination of tech and legal support. The two companies will also now work very closely together, with the American business helping to develop Autto-based products for the market.
The move follows a period of investment seeking that Autto commenced some months ago. Rather than coming back to London with a VC fund as a new investor, they have returned with a legal and tech business as a partner.
As readers know, Autto provides an easy to use, drag and drop-style digital system that helps firms and inhouse lawyers design workflows that can help steer staff through the production of certain types of document, or for example, guide them through a series of steps in a legal matter, or become part of a bespoke practice management structure for a team of lawyers working on a specific stream of work.
Rather than coming back to London with a VC fund as a new investor, they have returned with a legal and tech business as a partner.
The software is designed to be simple to use, and the team, led by Co-founders Ian Gosling, Max Cole and Krisztián Kerék, have focused on making sure it has a versatile and clear user interface.
As for Tangible/Ashe, this is what the Ashe site says they do:
- Offer a comprehensive cloud platform that provides workflow and lifecycle management
- Practice law and facilitates the performance of legal services for our clients
- Engineer the delivery of legal services by our Ashe Team laywers into structured service packages governed by client directed protocols
- Has an integrated program design that increases efficiency and reduces cost
Hence, this is an interesting move for a UK-based workflow company, as the US group has tech credentials, legal skills and is already used to working with corporate legal teams. Plus, now they will also use Autto to build specific products for clients.
The group has also gained funding from the UK Government, bringing the latest round of cash to about $1 million.
Robert Reynolds, Founder & CEO at Tangible, said: ‘Tangible will be building out a library of workflows (what we call Catalysts) and launching them into the market in the coming months in partnership with Autto. We are excited about the possibilities of working with Autto to help drive the next stage of its journey.’
Ian Gosling, CEO and co-founder of Autto, added: ‘This funding announcement is a huge milestone in Autto’s journey. It signifies a growing appetite for our solution and an affirmation of the need for simple-to-implement technologies in the workplace. We have great ambitions for the company and this funding will help us to expand our capabilities and help our customers on their automation journeys.’
Artificial Lawyer asked Autto for some more info, and this is what they said.
How did Autto get to know Tangible?
Tangible’s founder and CEO Robert Reynolds was looking for an automation solution and found us through an article on Artificial Lawyer.
He tried our product on a free trial, spent a weekend building automations and loved it. He then got in touch, Tangible became a customer and now an investor.
How does Tangible’s business work?
Tangible acts as a managed legal marketplace. It provides a combination of flexible human resources (in-house, sole practitioners and other law firms) and technology in a managed package to deliver rapid, repeatable and scalable legal services to businesses of all sizes, including Fortune 500 businesses.
Is this a precursor to the companies merging?
We have found a real meeting of minds with Tangible in our desire to deliver rapid, practical automation that suits the legal industry. We are both interested in how the mix of business models in the legal industry will change and we are going to be working together on some initiatives.
This is an alignment of like-minded companies who see the potential that automation has in benefiting lawyers and their clients.
What does the money mean to you and the team personally?
I think the thing that means most to us is that a large piece of this investment is coming from a customer who found us, used and loved our product and believes in what we are doing to the extent they are prepared to back us. On a personal level, after three years of pouring ourselves into the business, it is rewarding to get backing from that kind of investor.
It also gives us a platform to grow, a bridge to the US market and great product input from a firm at the forefront of how legal work is changing. So there are all sorts of practical advantages too!
Congrats to all involved. This site has been following Autto since the early days when it was just three guys in a shared office space on Grays Inn Road, and it’s great to see how they have evolved and grown.