LawAdvisor in start-up acquisition
Firm invests in legal automation with acquisition of early-stage consultation startup Kobi.ai from Mills Oakley.
Melbourne-founded legal management software-as-a-service startup LawAdvisor has acquired legal automation startup Kobi.ai from Australian law firm Mills Oakley.
Kobi.ai, founded by Raphael Cardona, automates the initial consultation stage of the client-lawyer relationship. It processes legal and historical data to flag pieces of legal information that will be of importance to legal professionals and their clients. In its current form, Kobi.ai draws upon case data and the migration act to offer advice on how to improve visa applications and can provide advice on alternative visa pathways. LawAdvisor founder Brennan Ong says the acquisition speaks to the LawAdvisor’s continued focus on giving new and existing customers access to leading edge legal technology. “We want to, as much as possible, even before a client engages with a lawyer, provide them with as much reliable information as we can,” Mr Ong said. LawAdvisor's public marketplace will undergo a redesign in the coming months, as the startup works to integrate Kobi.ai. The services it provides corporate clients will be unaffected.
The terms of the acquisition are undisclosed, but will see Mr Cardona join LawAdvisor where he will manage LawAdvisor’s product automation. “Legal services is a highly regulated industry, which makes it almost impossible to prescribe legal advice without crossing legal and ethical boundaries," Mr Cardona said. He added, “I didn't want to cross those boundaries, but at the same time, I knew the core Kobi.ai platform could make obtaining legal advice less painful. The experience LawAdvisor has in the space, and its existing network of lawyers, mean it's the best platform to get this tech out there.” Mr Ong and the LawAdvisor team say they are taking what they’ve learnt from working with corporate partners like Mills Oakley over the past few years and strengthening its public-facing platform. It is also a continuation of its founding mission “to improve access to justice in Australia.”