PwC + Clarilis Forge Doc Automation Alliance

PwC and doc automation pioneer Clarilis have announced an alliance. The deal follows the tech company’s participation in the Big Four firm’s Scale accelerator last year.

The alliance will see PwC offer the tech company’s capabilities to its many corporate clients as part of its NewLaw service, focusing for now on the UK.

The PwC NewLaw team covers a range of activities:

  • Law department consulting
  • Legal tech strategy
  • Project implementation and legal operations
  • Managed legal services
  • Contract remediation and repapering
  • Legal due diligence

And, Clarilis will now be offered as part of this.

Clarilis is different to many doc automation companies in that it has its own managed services arm staffed by experienced lawyers. With this extra capability they are able to take on the most complex of client contract automation needs, rather than expecting the clients to handle such projects alone.

James Quinn, CEO and co-founder of Clarilis, told Artificial Lawyer: ‘PwC’s NewLaw group works with inhouse teams to improve their operational capabilities. When they find a doc automation need then we will help.’

He said that the Scale accelerator programme for legal tech companies had been a great way to build a relationship with PwC, noting that normally it’s not easy to connect with such a large organisation.

‘Scale was a useful proof point for us and it was action-packed,’ Quinn added.

Alan Angell, NewLaw director at PwC and James Quinn, CEO and co-founder of Clarilis.

Quinn noted that Alan Angell, NewLaw director at PwC – who they will be working closely with – had previously been at Wall Street Docs, a doc automation and workflow system for the financial services sector, and really understood the value of what they were offering.

Commenting on the drivers for the alliance, Angell said: ‘While ‘cost-out’ has historically been the primary focus, as legal functions have become more cost efficient, there is now a growing trend towards increasing productivity and the positioning of the legal function as a business enabler that can directly drive revenue growth through contribution to enhancing customer/client experience and reducing time-to-market cycles. Document automation solutions, such as Clarilis, can play a large role in this space.’

He also said he believed there was a strong interest in doc automation among PwC’s clients.

‘While there is a lot of focus on full end-to-end platform-based solutions and CLM tools, there is still significant demand for doc automation solutions that solve for complex and targeted pain points,’ he explained.

All in all a very positive story for both parties. It shows that Scale has resulted in a tangible outcome for Clarilis. The alliance also provides access to PwC’s vast client base, at least in the UK. And it’s also another sign of more joined-up approaches to legal tech. For example, we have seen this recently before with Clarilis forming a partnership for expert legal content with From Counsel.