ThoughtRiver, the NLP-based legal tech company that has pioneered contract pre-screening and review, has reached an important new landmark after completing a $10m Series A funding round.
Tim Pullan, the founder and CEO of ThoughtRiver, told Artificial Lawyer about what reaching this point meant to him.
‘Seeing it progress from a concept developed on spare evenings several years ago to a business backed by fantastic investors and customers across the world is amazing for sure,’ Pullan said.
‘But ideas, even really good ones, are commonplace. They only ever see light of day because of dogged determination and great execution and that’s what really makes me proud.
‘It’s the team that has joined me along the way, the cutting edge technology and market position that they have developed that is the real achievement. We now have a substantial platform on which to help global customers radically improve deal velocity in what will be the most exciting phase of our journey yet,’ he added.
For many companies the Series A stage signals that they have achieved an important coming of age, namely that it is no longer really a start-up, but is now embarking on the scale-up phase. It also shows that, in this case, a company that released its ‘full public version’ three years ago has now developed to a point of wider acceptance and substantial investor backing. In short, it’s an important validation of the company’s vision and technology.
On this occasion the $10m funding round was led by Octopus Ventures, a leading European venture capital firm which invests in tech pioneers.
The company now has offices in New York, Singapore, London, Cambridge and Auckland, and with this new round of investment it will focus ‘even harder on growing US market share, scaling its sales and marketing efforts, and rolling out further integrations with major technology partners‘ they said.
And you can see in this early interview with Pullan in Artificial Lawyer from September 2017, how the company’s vision was taking shape.
Since then the company has grown in clients and capabilities, adding to the risk analysis focus with a broader contract analysis offering, along with the launch of its Lexible NLP framework that has increased its analytical power.
The company said it had achieved record growth over the past twelve months and signed contracts with major companies such as G4S, Singtel, and DB Schenker. It has also signed a strategic partnership with Big Four firm PwC, ‘enabling the professional services firm to develop a proposition for its clients and the broader market, powered by ThoughtRiver software’.
As part of the company’s continued international development, ThoughtRiver recently also announced the appointment of Michael Lisowski, formerly COO and divisional President at Ascential, as Chief Operating Officer.
Akriti Dokania, Early Stage Investor at Octopus Ventures, concluded: ‘While the legal sector has been slow to adopt AI compared to other industries, ThoughtRiver has a proven business model based on solving a fundamental issue for lawyers.
‘By using an advanced Natural Language Processing (NLP) engine to drive faster contract reviews and acceleration of deal flow and business growth, legal professionals can work more efficiently than ever. We are thrilled to support the ThoughtRiver team with its plans for global expansion as the firm disrupts an established market and set of processes.’
(Main picture: Founder, Tim Pullan, back in 2017, early on in the journey.)