Rosemary Ioannou | 29 April 2019

Innovation India - Opening the doors to legal finance

I recently travelled to India to take part in a conference about legal innovation organised by Cyril Amarchand Mangaldas (CAM) - the leading law firm in India.

The trip was my first to India and, frankly, one I was initially sceptical to make. However, this scepticism was entirely misplaced.

The conferences CAM organised with aplomb in both Mumbai and Delhi drew a significant audience from across the legal spectrum. We were blessed with an engaged and erudite audience. The level of interest in innovation in dispute resolution in India was phenomenal.

In their wisdom, the key themes CAM drew upon at the heart of conference were: a) artificial intelligence or AI (as to which Noah Waisburg from Kira Systems spoke informatively and passionately - at a level even I could understand); and b) dispute resolution funding.

Historically I wouldn't have viewed these two very different offerings - AI on the one hand, funding on the other - as necessarily being aligned or bringing forward the same value proposition for clients and law firms in the dispute resolution industry.

This view was clearly wrong. Innovation is at the heart of AI and funding. They both encourage the dispute resolution community to think differently about claims - how they should be approached, how they should be constructed, where the true value of the claim sits and, most importantly, how the best result can be achieved for clients in the most economic and efficient way.

Both funding and AI encourage practitioners to think beyond traditional boundaries and offer solutions to clients, without which many valuable claims may not be brought.

Discussing these very different forms of innovation in the context of the CAM conferences and the Indian market really shone a light on their similarities and the positive offering they both provide to clients and to practitioners in key dispute resolution centres - including in India.

As a global dispute resolution centre, India is stepping up a gear. This is especially the case with the forwardthinking approach demonstrated in the Indian dispute resolution community in recent years. India is fast becoming a centre for dispute resolution fit for the global stage and one which Vannin, as a global dispute resolution funder, is taking note. This is driven by all layers of the Indian legal market - judges, regulators, Senior Counsel, practitioners and clients and is being encouraged by recent regulatory and legal changes which are making India an increasingly attractive market in which to fund claims With firms like CAM leading the way, dispute resolution in India is on an exciting journey: one which Vannin is delighted to be part of.

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