Bloomberg Article: Atrium Law’s Pivot Puts $75M Into Legal Disruption Perspective

Bloomberg deconstructs where they think things went wrong for Atrium, there’s a sense of self satisfaction and “told you so” in this report.

All we’ll say is, where Atrium failed a successor will succeed. Law firm partners who think the status quo is preserved remind me of Australian government  ministers who still deny climate change after our fires that have just burnt a land mass almost as big as the UK.

Change is coming and is inevitable.. just when and what model is the question


Here’s the intro to the Bloomberg repot

So, Atrium Law isn’t all that much of a law firm anymore. The much-lauded venture pairing a software development company with a law firm founded by Silicon Valley entrepreneur Justin Kan made headlines this week for reportedly laying off most of its lawyers.

Law firms who paper venture capital deals will breathe a sigh of relief. They might even pop some schadenfreude-fueled champagne.

Kan came to the legal business in 2017 with $10 million in financing, and a year later he landed another $65 million in venture capital financing in a deal led by Andreessen Horowitz.

To the managing partner set, Kan was a well-funded, fresh-faced competitor from outside the industry who sparked more than his share of curiosity and, at some level, fear. He envisioned radical changes and his pedigree earned him a different kind of press than your typical legal tech venture. TechCrunch, for instance, said he was aiming “to replace lawyers with machine learning.”

In reality, Atrium was sitting lawyers next to software engineers, hoping to build a system that could automate its way to lower fees on legal work for start-up companies and higher market share. In a Bloomberg Businessweek article last year, Kan said his software could save about five hours from the typical lawyer papering a VC deal. TechCrunch said in June that Atrium’s “boring” software “kills legal busy work.”

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