Allen & Overy announces tech incubator's latest round of startups
11 legaltech and fintech companies are set to join Fuse, including ESG and sustainability compliance startup Greenomy
Allen & Overy has unveiled the latest raft of startups set to join its Fuse technology innovation incubator, announcing the addition of 11 legal and financial tech companies to the incubator amid rising demand for digital legal solutions during the pandemic.
Fuse’s new cohort, its fifth since opening in 2017, will be launched virtually for a second year in a row and will run through to the end of 2021.
Five legal tech firms have joined the incubator this year, including AI-powered data annotation and model training platform Humanloop and ESG and sustainability compliance company Greenomy.
Also joining the incubator are New York-based contract drafting company Draftwise, document verification firm Atticus and legal research platform CiteRight, the firm said on Monday.
The five selected companies will join Fuse alumni that were part of the innovation hub’s past cohorts, including Avvoka, Define, Legatics and StructureFlow, as it seeks to build on the progress made by previous Fuse iterations towards marrying legal analysis and “best-in-class” technology.
Shruti Ajitsaria, London-based A&O partner and head of Fuse, highlighted that “technology is no longer a fringe consideration for lawyers”, adding that the use of digital solutions has rapidly become a top priority for law firm management and will likely remain at the forefront for many firms even as the pandemic winds down.
“We have all now seen the impact technology has on the way lawyers work and the vital role its use will play in the future of law firms,” she said. “For firms to thrive and provide the best service to clients, they need to develop a deep understanding of different technologies, not only to enable deployment of more efficient tools, but also to identify emerging areas of law on which they should be focusing.”
Ajitsaria, who has been with the firm for nearly two decades, has led Fuse since its inception and made partner in 2019.
“Fuse is unique in bringing together a diverse group of leading legaltech and fintech companies, creating a community geared towards tackling the biggest issues in today's increasingly complex legal, regulatory and deal making environment,” she continued.
“We have seen first-hand the benefits that legaltech can have on the work our lawyers are doing and are committed to leading from the front by serving our clients in new and better ways.”
In collaboration with firm clients, six fintechs were also chosen to partake in Fuse for a second year, including Amplifi, Arteria, Elliptic, Liquidly, Solidatus and Vault Platform.
Many other firms have been ramping up their digital transformation and innovation programmes in response to the pandemic, with UK Magic Circle giant Clifford Chance recently appointing its global innovation head April Brousseau as director of its new research and development hub.
US firm Baker McKenzie also launched a firm-wide innovation arm last October called Reinvent, which acts as an umbrella for its new law programmes.