Reflecting on Luminance's Growth Story in the US

11 August 2023 | Clementine Fox

Having first joined the company back in 2017, it’s rewarding to reflect back on Luminance’s expansion in the United States and how we’ve brought our world-leading AI to some of the biggest law firms and organizations across the Atlantic. In fact, just one year after expanding our New York branch, Luminance experienced a 140% increase in its number of US-headquartered customers!

As we hit this milestone, I wanted to reflect on what makes Luminance such an essential technology for our US customers today. I thought I’d share a few observations from my time as US General Manager that exemplify why Luminance has made tremendous strides in this competitive market.

1. Helping Legal Teams Navigate Uncertainty

In the wake of the unprecedented challenges faced by the United States, from the Covid-19 pandemic and federal budget deficit to a national energy crisis and supply chain insecurity, the last few years has taught us there’s no predicting what major sociopolitical or regulatory shift lies just around the corner. As one of the world’s biggest tech powerhouses, the US has always been pro-innovation, but the uncertainty of the past few years has certainly renewed its drive to embrace and implement artificial intelligence (AI) to meet these challenges.

This was no more evident than in the legal sector, where events such as the fall-out from Russia’s invasion of Ukraine revealed the vulnerabilities of legacy technology and highlighted the importance of agile, AI-driven approaches to navigating crises effectively. For example, Maine-headquartered biotechnology giant, IDEXX, used Luminance’s AI to analyze 20,000 contracts across their supply chain following the introduction of economic sanctions. Luminance successfully provided a holistic overview of the organizations business activities, identifying all geographies present within contracts and any language referencing sanctioned entities. IDEXX later predicted that the sheer scale of the review meant that it would have taken weeks to conduct if they hadn’t used AI.

There really is no alternative to AI when it comes to empowering businesses to adapt and innovate in unpredictable market conditions. US legal teams that are quick to embrace AI in the face of today’s economic and regulatory uncertainty will be more resilient, efficient, and agile responding to future challenges.

2. Transforming Legal Teams from Cost Centers into Business Enablers

It’s no secret that many US companies are operating with leaner teams and tighter budgets to maintain their competitive edge in an uncertain market. One solution to limited resource has been the strategic implementation of AI technology. AI plays a crucial role in maximizing productivity, automating repetitive tasks and allowing overburdened legal teams to focus on value-generating business activities.

A good example of this is a company I’ve worked closely with over the past year: Lively, a San Francisco-based Health Savings Account technology company. After just two days of using Luminance during a free-of-charge trial, they completely automated the review of incoming Non-Disclosure Agreements (NDAs). As a result, their lean legal team could quickly direct their focus to the specific areas of each contract that presented risk or opportunity, reducing the hours previously spent manually reviewing page after page for key information.

And the role of AI in transforming Legal into value creators goes for large corporations as much as SMEs. Just look at the in-house legal team from Hitachi Vanatara - they can now generate an NDA and get it to signature in just 5 minutes using Luminance! With AI augmenting the manual, routine tasks that simply don’t need to drain the time and expertise of lawyers, they can dedicate their time to more complex and strategic work that drives profitability.

3. Empowering Non-Legal Teams with AI

Good news everyone, legal tech isn’t just for legal anymore! One the thing the US market has really shown us is that businesses are ready to use AI to drive legal and commercial efficiency across all parts of the organization. After all, you’d be hard pressed to find a business function that doesn’t interact with contracts on the daily, whether that’s Sales generating Purchase Agreements, Procurement negotiating Time and Materials contracts, or HR sending employment contracts for signature. Luminance’s AI empowers non-legal to conduct all these contracting processes on their own, eliminating bottlenecks and accelerating the commercial process.

There’s no better example of the impact AI can make across a business than Koch, the second largest privately-held company in the US. They sought a next-generation software to streamline how different business units and subsidiaries interacted with their global legal department. Now, Koch’s Sales and Procurement teams are using Luminance’s customizable contract generation functionality to produce their own Sales and Supplier Agreements. And with this process being completely automated, there’s no need to refer to Legal at every stage of the commercial process. Beyond contract generation, Koch’s employees are also using the Legal Helpdesk to submit any legal queries. This is making sure that all comms with Koch’s legal team are centralized in one place, driving efficiency and making legal advice more accessible than ever.

Looking Ahead

After two years of great success for our US team, I’m optimistic about what’s to come for Luminance! We know that AI is shaping a better, more efficient legal landscape and that AI adoption is increasingly being pushed to the top of the business agenda. Plus – we’re growing our team here! Make sure to check out our open positions here to become part of our amazing growth journey.