Mishcon Invests in DraftWise, Its 4th Startup Funding

Mishcon de Reya has made an investment in DraftWise, a US-based drafting tool that taps a firm’s knowledge base to improve the efficiency of contract creation. It is the fourth startup investment the pioneering UK firm has made.

The other investments made by Mishcon are:

  • TimebyPing (2017): a time automation company, which automatically builds lawyer timesheets.
  • Everchron (2017): a litigation case management company, which streamlines case preparation.
  • Thirdfort (2018): a digital onboarding app, which reduces ID fraud and speeds up client onboarding.

All four companies have been part of MDR LAB.

Law firms investing in legal tech companies, and in adjacent sectors, is becoming increasingly popular. Allen & Overy has invested in Nivaura, a fintech company. Wilson Sonsini invested in CLM company Lexion, while Clifford Chance and Latham & Watkins have put cash into Reynen Court. While CMS, Cooley and Singapore-based Rajah & Tann Asia were the founding investors in legal tech connectivity platform, Lupl.

The firm told Artificial Lawyer that Mishcon’s investment in DraftWise forms part of a larger seed round, which was secured post their completion of last year’s Y Combinator programme.

Mishcon now joins a list of major investors, which include Global Founders Capital, Soma Capital, Hack VC and a number of angel investors from across US and the Middle East. The startup, which is based in New York and formed in 2020, has not made public the total funding value.

And, as to what it does, DraftWise, founded by James Ding, Emre Ozen and Ozan Yalti, helps fee earners search and access ‘the best and most relevant knowledge from across a firm’s knowledge estate’, accelerating the time taken to draft documents.

DraftWise offers precedent search, recommendations based on past contracts, and a customised clause library.

Since DraftWise’s time in MDR LAB the product continues to evolve at pace, and the team has already secured a number of pilots with top tier law firms from around the world, the law firm said.

Dan Sinclair, Head of MDR LAB, commented: ‘The whole purpose of MDR LAB is to engage new products and technologies that we think can help move the needle for Mishcon de Reya and the legal market. Over the course of our time with DraftWise, iterating and shaping the product in the LAB and now as early customers, our conviction to deepen our relationship has grown, and we are delighted to be able announce this investment.

‘Our thesis to invest was built around their exceptional founding team, their deep product capability, and our belief that organisational knowledge is, and will continue to be both a strategic asset and competitive advantage in this sector.’

Mishcon de Reya is in the process of rolling out DraftWise, and the company will continue to receive ongoing support from its teams across the firm.

‘We’re thrilled about MDR’s investment in DraftWise, which signals their long term commitment to our shared vision for empowering every attorney with the cumulative knowledge of their firm,’ added James Ding, CEO and Co-founder, DraftWise.

The application window for the next MDR LAB Improve Programme is currently open and will close on 27th August.  For more information and details on how to apply, click here www.f6s.com/mdrimprove/apply   

And, as you may have seen, MDR LAB has evolved quite a lot since it launched. As set out in this interview with Sinclair in Artificial Lawyer, there are now three main parts to the LAB.

The Improve Programme, one of the three legs of the LAB, runs for 12 weeks and during that time, participants will get the opportunity to work within their target market, to pilot and improve products, gain a better understanding of how legal services are provided and understand where lawyers and their clients, would benefit from new technology. Learn more about the programme here.   

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