Wilson Sonsini Automates SEC-S1 IPO Registration Form

California’s Wilson Sonsini has partnered with Workiva, the connected reporting company, to automate the SEC Form S-1 that is used for IPO registration, in another key document automation project. The move follows the launch of its Neuron suite of tools and automated docs for startups.

The new automated application, called WS-1, substantially reduces inefficiencies involved in preparing the S-1 form, the firm said.

The firm added that: ‘WS-1 is the most complex automation project ever tackled by Wilson Sonsini.’

Wilson Sonsini began developing the WS-1 more than a year ago in collaboration with Workiva, the SEC compliance platform of choice for public companies. To date, the WS-1 has been used in two pilot IPO projects, introducing ‘dramatic efficiencies into the process’ they said.

Clients can ‘collaborate with Wilson Sonsini’s corporate attorneys using the WS-1 solution to produce an advanced draft S-1 that would reflect the latest substantive insights from attorneys and serve as a single, centralised, and consistent source for key legal points and company data needed for the IPO’.

According to estimates, drafting a registration statement can require more than 950 hours. They hope the WS-1 will greatly reduce that time so lawyers can focus on more value-added work.

‘In addition to its WS-1 effort, Wilson Sonsini has undertaken other automation efforts aimed at helping start-ups, pre-IPO companies, and public company clients with specific business transactions and functions, as well as ongoing corporate governance and compliance,’ the firm added.

David Wang, Wilson Sonsini’s chief innovation officer, said: ‘The WS-1 is a groundbreaking tool for registration statements that integrates the peerless legal knowledge of Wilson Sonsini with the Workiva platform. It extends the automation benefits that Workiva offers to public companies to the very start of the preparation process, where they are sorely needed.’