Case Study: Completing Reviews Twice as Quickly in Sell-Side Due Diligence – by eBrevia.
Morris, Manning & Martin, representing the seller in a > $1 billion M&A transaction, needed to perform sell-side due diligence on 1,200-1,400 documents and populate the disclosure schedules in only one week, per the client’s request. A pure manual review, without the assistance of an AI solution, would have likely taken far longer.
Read the case study to learn how the firm used eBrevia to unlock more than twice the efficiency as manual review, enabling them to meet the deadline with greater confidence.
Morris, Manning & Martin, LLP, founded in 1976, is an Am Law 200 firm with national and international reach. The firm is headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia, with over 180 attorneys across six offices.
- Morris, Manning & Martin, representing the seller in a > $1billion M&A transaction, needed to perform sell-side diligence on 1,200-1,400 documents and populate the disclosure schedules in one week. Manually reviewing, without the assistance of an AI solution, would have likely taken far longer.
- eBrevia’s AI-powered contract analytics software which automatically extracts numerous provisions related to M&A diligence, and many other use cases
- eBrevia enhanced the ability of five attorneys to complete the project quickly with greater confidence in the work-product while managing the project in an efficient and intuitive way
- More than twice as efficient as manual review
- Met a very tight, 1-week deadline – keeping the client happy and the deal on track
- Greater confidence in the final work-product, having been reviewed by both eBrevia’s AI and the attorneys in tandem
- Streamlined, efficient workflow, which saved time and limited room for errors
Piloting eBrevia and Signing-Up
John Martin, an associate in the firm’s Corporate practice, originally discovered eBrevia, a subsidiary of Donnelley Financial Solutions (DFIN), through a conversation with the firm’s DFIN representative. They spoke about efficiency and technology, as clients are increasingly looking for firms to innovate and the conversation quickly turned to the eBrevia contract analytics solution.
The firm piloted eBrevia on a buy-side diligence project and saw the software’s value – not as a replacement for attorneys – but as a supplement to make them more effective, efficient, and accurate. As John noted, eBrevia is ‘really enhancing our abilities and allowing us to focus on the critical thinking part, instead of the data management part’.
Following the pilot, Morris, Manning & Martin entered into an enterprise license with eBrevia for use on future projects.
An Urgent Sell-Side M&A Transaction
Morris, Manning & Martin, representing the seller on a >$1billion M&A deal, was asked by the client to perform sell-side diligence on 1,200-1,400 documents and draft related disclosure schedules in one week.
John approached a partner who was open to the idea of using AI and technology for greater efficiency and he successfully made the case for eBrevia on this project, as it likely would have been impossible to complete by manual review alone.
Training and implementation was seamless, involving a 30 minute training session with eBrevia for the attorneys on the basic functionality of the software. John indicated that, as most junior associates have grown up with technology, logging into eBrevia, opening files and clicking through them to review was very easy.
John estimated that eBrevia’s AI is able to do about 80% of the contract review work through its extraction of the relevant clauses from the agreement, with the attorney reviewing, supplementing, and providing higher-level analysis of those findings as needed.
The firm leveraged eBrevia’s tagging functionality to answer any questions or uncertainties that came up as junior associates worked through each document. Further, John noticed patterns and consistencies that made his quality control checks easier, and a powerful and unexpected benefit was that his responses to tagged items provided valuable learning opportunities for the junior team members.
For John, as the project manager, “I could tell who was doing what, how far along they’d gotten, [and] where we stood. I could give updates to other people on the team, to the client and keep everyone apprised of the status and whether we were going to make the deadline.”
Generating Disclosure Schedules
Using eBrevia’s built-in export functionality, the firm managed to generate the same data points in Excel that were ultimately copied into the disclosure schedules.
For John, this feature was an absolute game changer. He explained: ‘Basically, you have compiled your schedules by the time you have completed your document review. So not only have you reviewed your documents and done your diligence, but at the same time you’ve already knocked out your schedules.’
John estimated that using eBrevia was more than twice as efficient as manual review and provided greater confidence in the deliverables to the client. He noted, he felt ‘very confident in the product we were putting out, and that we captured what we needed to capture, because the software is basically telling me what we’ve done and how we’ve done it’.
John stated that ‘on the next project, we anticipate more efficiency than the first with the increased knowledge’ of eBrevia’s advanced workflow features.
Summary of the Benefits
John views the added value from eBrevia in three main areas:
- Management workflow: Managing the workflow, the firm had a level of oversight that a decentralized review could never replicate. John had visibility into both the progress of each team member and the quality of each member’s work.
- Individual workflow: Workflow for each user was greatly enhanced by giving reviewers the ability to simply click to the next agreement, easily mark-up items, and compile all data and findings into a simple export.
- Enhanced speed and accuracy: Using AI to supplement and enhance attorney-level reviews meant more confidence in the deliverables for the client and more efficiency in its production.
Future Use for eBrevia
Morris, Manning & Martin is gearing up for their next project with eBrevia, a buy-side M&A diligence review. They will also be on the lookout for future sell-side diligence projects, given eBrevia’s particular value in generating disclosure schedules.
While primarily used in the Corporate group, John sees broad application for eBrevia within the firm – ‘I could see it being used in almost any kind of practice where you have heavy document review’.
As law firms must do more in less time, Morris, Manning & Martin’s use of innovative tools like eBrevia is a way to bring incredible value to clients in a sustainable manner while also positioning the firm for future work.
[ Artificial Lawyer is proud to bring you this sponsored thought leadership article by eBrevia. ]