With International Growth in Mind, LegalTech Firm Disco Nabs $83M

Austin—Legal tech startup Disco announced Thursday it has raised $83 million in new funding.

The round was led by Toronto-based Georgian Partners, with participation from existing investors Bessemer Venture Partners, LiveOak Venture Partners, The Stephens Group, and venture-debt provider Comerica. Disco has now raised a total of $135 million, the company said.

Disco sells subscription software that manages the process of storing and reviewing digital documents that serve as evidence in court cases. This legal services specialty is known as e-discovery.

“E-discovery is a big space and (is) growing at a big clip,” says Kiwi Camara, Disco’s founder and CEO. The sector is fueled by the proliferation of enterprise data: files, e-mails, and other digitally shared material that can be relevant in legal disputes, he says.

“We have lawyer-focused design,” Camara adds. “We bring together great engineering and a deep understanding of what lawyers do and how they work.”

Camara, who is an attorney by training, says the startup will use the new funding, in part, to provide services beyond just evidence discovery.

“We are beginning to broaden that platform for the entire life of the case: witness dossiers, proof tables and jury charges, to provide end-to-end service, all the way to the final resolution of the dispute,” he says.

In addition to building software for additional stages of commercial litigation processes, Disco plans to use the funds to expand to additional markets in Europe and Asia. The startup opened a London office in November.

“As we get that up and running, we’ll use that to figure out our international playbook,” Camara says. “We’ll look to open one [office] a quarter in other international markets in Europe and Asia.”

Since Disco’s founding as “CS Disco” in Houston six years ago, the legal tech industry has grown as technology has been developed to meet these needs, whether it’s aimed at practicing lawyers or individuals who need legal services.

Trust & Will, a San Diego startup that provides digitized estate planning documents, said Thursday it closed on $2 million in new funding. It also announced a partnership with Boston-based Notarize to provide what it says is the first ever “end-to-end” digital will in Nevada. (Disco moved its headquarters to Austin in September.)

Camara at Disco says artificial intelligence is playing a growing role at the company. “The same way the senior lawyers train junior lawyers to find evidence, we’re teaching the software to do this,” he says.

“We can accelerate the time to finding actionable evidence to settle or resolve the dispute, and increase the quality of that evidence. If you’re facing a regulatory investigation, there is value in getting that resolved in one month rather than six months.”

Angela Shah is the editor of Xconomy Texas. She can be reached at ashah@xconomy.com or (214) 793-5763. Follow @angelashah

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