28 Mar 2022

Contract review startup Della raises $2.5m in first seed funding round

Clients include Mishcon de Reya, Eversheds Sutherland and Fidal

Christophe Frèrebeau

Della, an Anglo-French contract review legal technology startup has raised $2.5m in its first seed funding round.

The firm said the cash injection from new investor Pragmatech Ventures and existing investors will be used to build the London-based startup’s presence in Europe and the US and enhance its AI-powered contract review offering.

It cites Mishcon de Reya, Eversheds Sutherland, Fidal, and ‘several large multinational, enterprise organisations’ as customers.

Founded in 2018, Della, which has offices in London and Paris, launched its flagship contract review product in 2020. It promises a scalable, easy to use end-to-end legal review process ‘that learns to understand questions and their associated answer’. Its users can create checklists, highlight relevant language, detect potential red flags, prepare custom reports and generate letters and other documents to help them to build their case and advise their clients. 

The solution has been trained to operate in more than 20 languages and claims to allow firms to adopt AI without the significant time investment that was required for early AI legaltech players. 

Christophe Frèrebeau, co-founder and CEO of Della, said the company’s bet on AI-powered solutions reflected the notion that “AI has moved up the value chain” in the legal industry. 

He added: “[...] users just don’t want to use pre-trained, customised AI, due to the time it takes to train those models and the cost involved in doing that. Larger transfer learning-based models, like Della’s, are replacing those legacy solutions, and we are enabling lawyers to use AI to help with more and more complex tasks.”

Evgeny Sergeev, founder and general partner of Pragmatech, said Della’s product was “redefining what people think legaltech can do”. 

“It is hard to deny the relevance of artificial intelligence and its applications in the field of law, in general, and, in particular, to legal review workflows. We strongly believe that Della will shape the future technology stack of both law firms and corporate legal teams globally, and we plan to spend a significant amount of time with the company and its management team to help them on their journey,” Sergeev said. 

This year has already seen a number of notable deals in the legatech space with companies looking to grow their offerings as demand for efficient digital solutions continues to boom. 

Earlier this month, New York-based legal service provider Epiq acquired legal management consultancy Fireman & Co for an undisclosed amount in a bid to broaden its data and knowledge management expertise. 

And in February, Cincinnati-based legaltech SurePoint acquired Cole Valley Software, the maker of a customer relationship management (CRM) platform targeted at legal professionals, in a deal that promised to  create the first legaltech platform that integrates real-time CRM into practice management and financial data. 

 

 

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