As you have just read, Allen & Overy’s Fuse has launched its latest cohort. Artificial Lawyer asked two of the companies – Neopolis and Legalme – about what they are developing and what they hope to get out of the Fuse programme.
Neopolis – Michael Mansfeld, Co-Founder & CEO (above right).
What stage of growth are you at now?
neopolis was incorporated in January 2021 and closed a Pre-Seed Round with HPI Seed Fund in early 2022. Currently, neopolis has six team members. Fuse will enable us to accelerate our geographical expansion after launching in the German-speaking countries.
What do you hope to get out of Fuse in terms of product development?
Right from the beginning we paid a lot of attention on building a user-centric product. We made use of legal design thinking methods and design sprints getting a constant stream of feedback from hundreds of legal professionals.
What we love about Fuse is that it not only allows us to co-create with A&O lawyers, but also provides the opportunity to develop excellent end-to-end legal services with clients of A&O.
Our ambition is to prove A&O and their clients that neopolis’ Git-based collaboration tool delivers practicality and fun to their daily workflow.
During the Fuse programme we want to explore the needs of a multinational law firm. This will help us to integrate neopolis seamlessly in collaboration processes and IT infrastructure (e.g. Document Management Systems).
How much of a benefit is it to you to have access to the lawyers and clients of A&O?
Fuse is a great opportunity for us to connect to many innovative minds and companies within the international legal tech ecosystem.
Furthermore, the access to clients and discussions about improving collaboration might spark new ideas for future neopolis features.
We are excited about the opportunity to get our product challenged by a multinational law firm like Allen & Overy and its clients. It is very beneficial to instantly get feedback on new ideas and features by leading legal professionals. Fuse is the perfect place to learn fast.
Legalme – Chiara McDermott, Co-Founder, (above left).
Why join Fuse?
Legalme aims to revolutionise access to justice in the small claims space and bring power back to the consumer. Our digital platform empowers individuals with tools such as document automation and data-driven financing, to guide them through complex legal issues relating to housing disrepair and consumer disputes.
Having recently graduated from the Ministry of Justice’s Lawtech Sandbox, we are now ready to pilot test our technology. As the premier legal digital innovation lab in the UK, we believe Fuse can provide us with the dedicated mentorship, partner networks and digital resources to drive this growth. We look forward to working alongside like-minded legal tech entrepreneurs to bring a positive impact to society.
As an access to justice company how will being inside Allen & Overy help?
Supporting access to justice for disadvantaged people has long been a central part of A&O’s pro bono work. Over the last few decades, A&O has developed valuable relationships with Law Clinics offering free legal advice across London. We are looking to explore collaboration opportunities with these access to justice programmes and lawyers to determine how we can best improve the pro bono experience for legal service providers and most importantly, the consumers seeking their support.
By testing our product with A&O’s lawyers and network, we hope to establish our proof of concept and explore applications of our technology across the broader dispute resolution ecosystem to ensure a simpler and more effective claim resolution process for everyone.
Equally we hope to benefit from A&O’s professional experience in navigating our own duties to legal & regulatory compliance. Through the Fuse programme, we hope to achieve full exempt or regulated status and complete our pilot in order to begin commercialisation.
The law must work for everybody. A&O shares this vision and Fuse provides Legalme with the tools to bring us one step closer to this goal.
P.S. AL also asked the global law firm whether it would be providing Legalme with pro bono support? They replied that ‘to the extent possible, A&O will be providing Legalme pro bono advice on the key legal issues that they will face in the development of their platform’, which is great to hear.