The future of law is digital

Technology has completely transformed the way business is done, but law firms have not changed.

The future of law is digital

I founded Nlaw in 2016 with a mission to create a modern law firm. And we have exceeded all expectations.

Back in 2016, I had no plans to conquer the world. I enjoyed practicing law and wanted to create a law firm that wasn't symbolised by large corporate meeting rooms with marble, suits and ties, but instead created a more start-up-like atmosphere. I loved working with young entrepreneurs and wanted to be part of their success stories. It was also a very exciting time to be an entrepreneur in Slovenia, fueled by crypto-mania and the influx of venture capital money. Thanks to good timing and an amazing team of people who have joined me along the way, Nlaw is one of the fastest growing law firms in the CEE in region of the last 5 years with offices in Ljubljana, Slovenia and Zagreb, Croatia.

Digital native

We built Nlaw from the ground up based on technology. In terms of technology, it was nothing exciting, but the effects were material. We minimised the inflow and outflow of paper documents, implemented electronic signatures, deployed everything in the cloud, outsourced secretarial work to a call centre, implemented a state-of-the-art system for matter management, tasks, deadlines, and automated billing, AI-driven document review software, a proprietary wiki and library, and many other software gadgets. This infrastrure empowered our lawyers to get more work done faster, with higher quality and fewer (er zero) errors. We were so good at it that, with up to 10 lawyers in two countries, we didn't need administrative staff, which is unheard of in the arena of commercial law firms.

And that wasn't enough for us. We developed a Covid-19 App, which helped people in Slovenia comply with governmental travelling restrictions due to Covid-19. We worked with d.labs to develop TimelineMatters, a tool for law firm using Clio to present progress on matters to clients.

Venture Capital in the EU is growing at an amazing pace

Venture capital funding in Europe grew 6x over the last decade, to nearly $24bn in 2020 ($34.3bn in 2019). In addition to London, which has estalibshed itself as a VC hube before, Berlin, Paris, Amsterdam, Barcelona and many others have grown substantially and developed strong communities. Contrary to the USA, Europe's VC ecosystem is much more diverse and sitributed and is not consolidated in one city, valley or a hill. We have also started to see large IPOs/exits and a wave of founders becoming investors or starting new companies (Spotify, N26, Adyen, Klarna, Skype, Transferwise, UiPath, Delivery Hero etc. "Mafias").

I am extremly bulish on European Venture Capital Space. Nlaw as a law firm frew into one of the more important stakeholders in venture capital space in Slovenia and Croatia. We have advised numerous startups and investors on their investments in the region, and we have accompanied them and their companies from hell to the moon (and sometimes there and back again) and we would do it all again. I am very proud to have worked with Fil Rouge Capital, Slovenian Business Angels, J&C Ventures, Iconomi, GoCrypto, 0xcert, Transcend Ventures, Aragon, Integral VP, Visionect, Borza terjatev, D.labs, AlpVent, Zemanta, Taia, MojMojster/Daibau, Beeping and many others.

In 2016 we wanted to work with VC investors and startups in Slovenia; and in 2019, impressed by achievements of Rimac, Infobip and others, opened an office in Zagreb, Croatia to contribute to the growth of Croatian startup ecosystem. Now our goal is to gradually start serving investors and enterprenours accross the EU.

UX Work: Woman's hands drawing a wireframe
Photo by Kelly Sikkema / Unsplash

We are digitising the law firm.

The world has changed. Over the past few decades, technology has completely transformed the way business is done. It has fundamentally redefined almost every business function, from how companies sell to their customers, organise governance, hire, develop, and create value.

Law firms have not changed. They have somehow managed to hold on to the fundamentals of their business model, which has remained largely unchanged for decades. Although law firms implemented software, allowed remote work, and relaxed many self-imposed rules, they did not change their mindset or behaviour at all.

The client experience is still characterised by a lack of cost predictability, the need for in-person meetings and phone calls, numerous versions of documents exchanged between parties, notarized signatures and delays. It became clear to us, our clients, and many other high-growth startups that the law firm experience could have been much better.

Nlaw has already solved a number of problems, such as:

  • we have a high level of internal automation that allows us to deliver documents to clients faster,
  • we have predictable pricing for certain services at fixed rates or as a percentage of the transaction value,
  • we've created a culture of innovation, which means we're constantly improving and finding ways to do things differently,
  • we're dead serious about legal work, but we pride ourselves on our relaxed corporate atmosphere,
  • we're a company where you can work from anywhere, anytime if you want to,
  • we're crazy about software, we've implemented and developed our own solutions.

But there are many other problems that need to be solved. We will continue to work on delivering faster, high quality, digital legal services with upfront pricing across the EU. We will improve the entire Client Journey from discovery, onboarding, execution to billing to further make Nlaw's services a painless and effective legal solution.

This is not only a promise to ourselves, our clients and community. We have already begun to do so. The free NDA app is already live and will soon be enriched with additional features. In 2021, we will roll out more features like Founder's Agreement, Fundraising Documentation, Incorporation Services, Hiring Documentation and Commercial Agreements.

We are excited about what is to come and look forward to having you as our customers.