From Sydney onto global stage: RDO wins Legaltech Venture Day at UNSW

Resolve Disputes Online (RDO), a dispute resolution software startup, has won the Legal Tech Venture Day Sydney edition, the fourth stop in our Global Legal Tech startup competition promoting global tech innovation within the legal industry.

Article written by Heidi Harrington-Johnson for UNSW

Legal startup, Resolve Disputes Online (RDO), won first prize at the Legaltech Venture Day at UNSW Sydney celebrated on February 10. The international competition, co-hosted by UNSW Law, The Allens Hub for Technology, Law & Innovation, and IE, celebrates and supports global legal tech startups disrupting the sector.

This global startup competition—celebrated previously in Sao Paolo, Turin and London and soon to be celebrated in New Delhi, Cape Town and Spain-- prioritizes startups that use technology to solve important legal challenges faced by companies, governments, public institutions and civil society, as well as those that address operational issues and to further the cause of justice.

Resolve Disputes Online (RDO) beat four other Australian start-ups that pitched to a jury of local and international experts selected by UNSW and IE.

RDO is dispute resolution software as a service empowering ADR experts, courts and tribunals with innovative technology to improve access to justice around the world. The startup’s software allows clients to create and host their own branded negotiation, mediation and arbitration tools for case management, including valuable data insights and analytics.

Shortlisted startups also included Ailira, an AI research assistant, an online learning tool for law students (Yegal Academy), an automated documentation verification app (Atticus) and a digital platform focused on digital family property.

“Winning means a lot because the competition, as you saw tonight, was so, so impressive. There are some amazing legaltech companies in Australia so to win it here, where I think Australia is one of the best hubs for legal technology, means an awful lot,” says RDO Co-Founder Joe Al-Khayat. 

Founder of RDO, Joe Al-Khayat will participate at the Global Legaltech Venture Day final taking place in Madrid on May 2020 along with seven other international start-ups that won the regional competitions around all five continents. All startups will pitch their business to a range of investors, entrepreneurs and legal industry experts.

“I love Madrid,” says Co-Founder Joe Al-Khayat. “I’m just going to go and really enjoy it – soak up the atmosphere, check out the competition, and try and win.”

An inspiring and disrupting journey for the industry

Professor Lyria Bennett Moses, Director of the Allens Hub for Technology, Law & Innovation and the event host, states that the competition is not just about the prizes.

“For legal start-ups, it’s also the opportunity to hear about what others are doing, get some feedback and, for the winner, get global attention at the finals of the international competition in Spain,” she says.

“For the legal industry, it is a chance to see what is happening in process innovation and what might be available – or on the horizon – placing firms in a better position to imagine and plan for the future.”

Inefficient processes in the legal system and in legal practice, and the prohibitive cost of some legal services are two of the issues that prompted this event, Professor Bennett Moses says.

Dean of UNSW stated that its an exciting time for disrupters in the industry. “Our perspective on what we see as massive structural change in the legal profession is not one of doom and gloom but one of genuine excitement,” said Scientia Professor George Williams AO, Dean of UNSW Law, in his opening address.

Article written by Heidi Harrington-Johnson for UNSW