Law firms incubate for the future

Technology, technology, technology – it is the word on everyone’s lips.

Finally law firms are starting to realise the potential of legal tech investment, with Mishcon de Reya being the latest firm to create an incubator programme, MDR LAB, offering free legal advice to connect with up-and-coming companies early in their development. This follows similar efforts from various law firms, including Slaughter and May and Addleshaw Goddard, who have invested time and money on tech start-ups.

With tougher competition and rising costs, this seems to be a prudent way for law firms to invest and prepare for the future. The start-ups of today will innovate and perfect solutions that law firms will be looking to utilise in the coming years in order to manage costs and increase the effectiveness of their operations.

Miscon de Reya has revealed a six-strong shortlist of legal tech start-ups to participate in its incubator programme, MDR LAB. The companies were selected after a pitch day at Mishcon’s London office on 25 April, where 19 companies presented their products.

The MDR LAB project is the latest of several technology incubation programmes where law firms are offering free legal advice to hook up with up-and-coming companies early in their development. Slaughter and May, Simmons & Simmons and Addleshaw Goddard have similar programmes which focus on fintechs, although Mishcon’s MDR LAB focusses exclusively on legal start-ups.

Overseen by chief strategy officer Nick West and in conjunction with tech investment fund L Marks, MDR LAB seeks to promote legal-minded technology that will benefit both lawyers and their clients. The scheme began in January.