Legaltech Immediation backed by billionaire Waislitz in $3.75m raising

Legaltech Immediation backed by billionaire Waislitz in $3.75m raising

Immediation, an Aussie legaltech start-up that aims to reduce the cost of mediating legal disputes, has raised $3.75 million in a bid to expand its offering internationally.

The company, founded by barrister Laura Keily, is backed by billionaire investor Alex Waislitz through his private company Thorney Investment Group.

Melbourne-based Immediation has ramped up its expansion plans after experiencing a tenfold increase in the number of people using its platform in the seven months to October this year.

The company has also entered into arrangements with the Federal Court of Australia, the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal and the New Zealand Ministry of Justice with a view to resolving matters destined for mediation more quickly by diverting them to the online platform.

COVID-19 has accelerated the popularity of the platform, which provides online resolution to matters involving family, employment, business disputes and cross-border disputes at a lower cost than traditional mediation options.

"From the beginning, our focus has been to make justice more accessible to all," says Keily.

"Technology has transformed industries like health and accounting, and now with COVID, the legal industry is seeing the real power technology can play to alleviate mounting pressures on the court system, and make justice more affordable, more amicable, and more accessible for all.

"We have seen during 2020 that virtual court, virtual mediations and virtual hearings are not just possible - they are critical."

Since launching the platform last year, Keily says Immediation has addressed hundreds of matters.

"This funding will allow us to accelerate the trends that are right in front of us," she says.

"We'll continue to invest in our technology, our people, and our international expansion, ultimately taking the burden off overwhelmed court systems globally and making it easier for all to achieve a legal outcome."

Waislitz, a seasoned investor who has previously backed former start-ups Afterpay (ASX: APT) and NEXTDC (ASX: NXT), is chairman of the listed Thorney Investments (ASX: TEK). He says the justice system is "ripe for disruption".

"Immediation offers the possibility of online resolution of disputes at a time when COVID has helped hasten the adoption of technology across all sectors, including legal.

"We have been impressed with Immediation's business model, its growth to date and with Laura Keily and her management team.

"Provided Immediation can continue to execute well, we expect it to grow quickly and to have global application."

Immediation plans to extend its international reach to the US, with a specific focus on international hiring and product development targeting key areas of the legal system.

The funds raised by the company also will be used to develop its bespoke technology for online courts and mediation with plans to branch out to family law dispute resolution.

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