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Entrepreneurship

Mariana Hagström

Founder & CEO, Avokaado

Estonia

Bio

Mariana Hagström is an attorney-at-law and legal tech startup founder who has been practising corporate and information technology law for more than 10 years before the transition from the legal practise to legal tech in 2016. She has been studying law in Tartu and Stockholm Universities, where she obtained a master degree in Information Technology and Law. The decision to make a career turnaround started to evolve from the managing partner position and from the need to find more efficient methods for delivering and packaging legal services for clients with scalable new pricing models.

Since founding Avokaado her mission has been to build a bridge between legal and business operations and make it cost and time efficient for both sides. She has said: “During my career in a law firm, serving the clients and my fellow lawyers in different positions, from young attorney to managing partner, I constantly struggled with inefficiency we had in the whole service delivery cycle. Long hours and weekends were all spent on generating a perfect document. Now my company  helps to generate this perfect document within minutes.”

Contribution to Legal Tech

For the past 4 years, Mariana has been a true legal tech pioneer and evangelist in the Nordics, giving workshops and talks to a wider audience and in the Universities on contract automation, legal tech, and the future of law. With her team she has published several case studies and white-papers on legal innovation and automation and helped to scale the mind shift to efficiency, digitalization, and legal automation among lawyers in law firms and in-house legal teams. She is a product owner and CEO of Avokaado and a driving force of the team to turn the vision and customer feedback into product functionality and features. She has been a mentor and a role model  for the next generation of young female lawyers, mentor and jury member for years for startup accelerator programs and hackathons, events organizers and an active member in the startup community.

Avokaado has helped with legal automation law firms and companies in the Nordics, Baltics, Poland, Belgium, Luxembourg etc. For more effective technology adoption Avokaado  has created a signature pilot program for the law firms with project management, advisory and workshops.

Other Winners

Entrepreneurship

Julia Salasky

CEO & Founder, Legl

UK

Bio

Julia is a lawyer and entrepreneur. She is the founder and CEO of Legl, cloud-based software for law firms that drive success in a  digital-first world. She previously founded CrowdJustice, an award-winning platform for giving more access to the legal system. Julia has won the Financial Times’ Legal Innovator of the Year award, Legal Week’s Outstanding Innovator of the Year.  Julia worked as a lawyer at Linklaters, and subsequently led the United Nations’ work on online dispute resolution. Julia studied at the University of Virginia, the University of Oxford, and the London School of Economics. She advocates for change in the sector through technology and also in respect of gender equality.

Contribution to Legal Tech

Julia Salasky is the founder of Legl and CrowdJustice, two values-led lawtechs established to simplify and improve access to legal services. CrowdJustice has helped change the way people fund legal matters; over 500,000 people have raised over £16M to enable thousands of people to get legal advice and representation. Launched in 2019, Legl gives law firms simple, flexible tools to run their business more digitally, driving revenue, reducing opex and – critically – enabling a better client experience. 

Other Winners

Entrepreneurship

Katarzyna Abramowicz

CEO, Legal Networks Sp. z o.o. and SpecFile Project Sp. z o.o.

Poland

Bio

Katarzyna Abramowicz, is a legal adviser with many years of experience in government agencies and in the private sector. She is a former representative of KIRP in Brussels. She is the service co-founder of bilety24.pl, przelewy24.pl, specprawnik.pl, oduslug.pl, specfile.pl and sygnanet.pl

Katarzyna Abramowicz is also a speaker at the largest conferences on legal issues in Poland and new technologies such as the 7th Conference and the National Interoperability Test Electronic Signature CommonSign 2017, Modern Law Firm and Legal Department – data security, document flow and case management, Law Summit, Conference Cyber Security in the Media, LegalTech Poland, international conference CyberSec, Impact Fintech, LegalTech Forum 2020. Winner of StartUp Europe Awards Cyber and Law Category 2017.

Contribution to Legal Tech

Katarzyna provides legaltech services through specprawnik.pl which connects clients with lawyers and is the the largest service in Poland in this area. She is also the CEO of the Cybersecurity legaltech project – SpecFile – which provides a simple one-click data encryption. Through Sygnanet.pl – clients are provided with a secure anonymous channel for reporting abuse in companies (AML/compliance/HR)

Other Nominees

Entrepreneurship

Margarita Sivakova

Co-Founder, CEO, Legal Nodes

Ukraine

Bio

Margarita Sivakova, Co-Founder & CEO of Legal Nodes; a platform for lawyers to work on bigger projects and for businesses to receive legal help seamlessly worldwide. She has graduated with the First-Class Honours in Law from the University of Kent and has completed a Legal Practice Course at the BPP Law School in London. She also had experience in working at various law firms from the multinational corporate law firms to medium-sized law firms and private practices in London. Seeing first-hand how legal market fragmentation, the bureaucracy involved at big law firms as well as the very high barrier to entry to the profession negatively impacts the end-customer and legal professionals, she became passionate about redefining the way the legal market functions today.

Contribution to Legal Tech

Margarita co-founded a legal tech start-up named Legal Nodes – a legal platform that provides full-cycle business legal support through the distributed network of lawyers worldwide. Its mission is twofold: provide freelance lawyers with an alternative model of working online and make it possible for companies to receive holistic legal support at transparent prices. Legal Nodes was among the winners of the Startup Grind Global Ukrainian Delegation in 2019. In September 2019 Legal Nodes won the Start-up Competition at IT Arena, one of the biggest IT conferences and startup competitions in Ukraine. This year they won a $50K Grant from Ukrainian Startup Fund. 

Other Winners

Entrepreneurship

Rosa Espín

co-CEO, Ambar Partners

Spain

Bio

Rosa Espín is co-CEO and one of the founding partners of Ambar Partners, a disruptive legal firm which provides legal services on a flexible and tech enabled way with on demand high caliber legal talent. Rosa Espín is a lawyer specialized in Regulatory and Compliance with more than 12 years of experience in the legal sector. Throughout her career, Rosa has been selected in the Chambers and Partners ranking within the energy sector, as well as being recommended as Best Lawyer in Litigation. 

Contribution to Legal Tech

In 2020 she participated in the founding of the law firm Ambar Partners, of which she is co-CEO. Ambar has irrupted in the Spanish legal market with a disruptive and innovative model that relies on technology. Rosa Espín has helped to define the company’s technology strategy by partnering with leading companies in the industry implementing technology in machine learning, contract data, event-driven analytics (including M&A, complex litigation and other projects that require document review). In addition, she has designed for Ambar the first Bootcamp in Spain which gathers computer engineers and lawyers in order to develop new models and tools to automatize, digitalize and innovate in the legal sector.

Other Nominees

Entrepreneurship

Anna de Stefano

Legal Innovation Hacker, Start Up Advisor & Mentor, Business Angel

Entrepreneurship

Laia Moncosí 

Co-Founder, Lawyers for Projects

Spain

Bio

Laia is the Co-Founder in 2017 of the alternative legal services provider Lawyers for Projects. Lawyers for Projects helps companies optimize and reduce their legal costs with independent top-tier lawyers and technology. She’s specialized in Competition Law and Commercial Law with a Law degree from the University of Navarra and Executive MBA from ESADE. Laia has developed her professional career during 18 years at PwC. She has extensive in-house experience acquired during a secondment in one of the world leaders in the automotive industry. Firm advocate that the legal sector needs to innovate in order to evolve.

Contribution to Legal Tech

For the past three years Laia has been preaching about legal tech solutions to a wide array of audiences contributing to the implementation and promotion of legal tech amongst in house legal departments.

She has participated as a keynote speaker in legal innovation and legal tech issues in various academic and legal events. She has an extensive knowledge of legal tech solutions in business law and she has been a pioneer in the legal tech and legal ops consultancy in Spain, helping in house legal departments of multinational companies move forward in their digital transformation strategies.

Other Nominees

Entrepreneurship

Anna de Stefano

Legal Innovation Hacker, Start Up Advisor & Mentor, Business Angel

Entrepreneurship

Carina Smolik-Fischer

Director Product Management, BusyLamp

Germany

Bio

Carina has graduated in business informatics and was a partner and sales manager for the software company AF Software GmbH in Hamburg for more than 19 years, which developed and sold the “winra” software.  After selling her company to Wolters Kluwer, she worked for 4.5 years as the product manager of the “winra” software at Wolters Kluwer. She now works at BusyLamp as Director of Product Management and is responsible for the matter management software matter.space and the BL Legal Spend Management Software.

She has more than 20 years of experience in Sales, Product and Project Management for legal process management software in commercial law firms and legal departments. She is passionate about Legal Tech and committed to succeed the transformation of the legal sector. For Carina, it is a real privilege bringing Legal Tech closer to lawyers. She is married and has a 13-year-old daughter. A Spanish water dog completes the family and as a North German she loves to go to the sea and enjoy the nature.

Contribution to Legal Tech

Since Carina studied information technology in the 1990s, she was always fascinated about the impact modern and intuitive software has. At that time, the focus of software was only to automate processes, but she felt very passionate about designing and developing software for users to streamline their daily work – intuitive, easy to use, quickly at the goal.   Carina and her father, who started with IT technology in the early 70s, were always fascinated about the fast and evolutionary development in the IT technology branch. Driven by a befriended law firm they started their own company “AF Software GmbH” in 1996 and developed the first software program specialized for commercial law firms and legal departments. They created a totally new software based on the latest Technology at that time and – and this is the revolutionary part of it – with open interfaces to Microsoft Office for Windows and Borland Word Perfect, networked and with a clear focus on Document Management, Fulltext Search and Daily Work Dashboard.  

She became Sales Director and had a massive influence on the strategy and development of their “winra” Software: customer-centric, based on the latest legal design and legal tech development. The company grew rapidly, attracting the best commercial Law firms in Germany and then began expanding into the Legal Departments.   Over the years, “winra” was always at the forefront in modern technology and legal innovation for Matter and Case Management. In 2015 their company was sold to Wolters Kluwer and founded the new Legal Department Business Unit. Carina became the Product Manager for “winra” for more than 4 years. In September 2019 she started in a new challenge with BusyLamp: Development of a new Matter Management Software from the scratch based on the latest technology: modern Cloud software combined with more than 24 years of experience in Legal Tech. The first release started in September this year and as Director for Product Management she is responsible for the scope, design and strategy of the new Software called matter.space.

Other Nominees

Entrepreneurship

Anna Agu

Co-Founder, Lex Law Office

Estonia

Bio

Anna Agu is a co-founder of Lex Law Office in Estonia. Lex Law Office is a leading law firm that specializes in legal assistance for Fintech, blockchain and crypto projects. Anna is a great lawyer and advises companies in the field of finance, cryptocurrency and compliance regulation. Moreover, she is an excellent expert and public international speaker (presentations at TerraCrypto (Nur-Sultan), TerraCrypto Forum (Moscow), CryptoFin (Tallinn), FinadTech (Barcelona)). Even during the pandemic, Anna has managed to give presentations as a speaker at Blockconf Digital 2020 and Women Tech Global Conference.

Contribution to Legal Tech

She has extensive experience working for tax authorities and government working groups. Anna had also participated in the governmental working exchange visits in different EU countries. During her career, she has taken part in the development of changes in regulation and cooperation between the public authorities of Estonia. Due to this experience, Anna considers vital the cooperation between innovations start-ups, government authorities and legal experts to provide the elaboration of innovational technology and a supportive business environment.

In 2019 Anna was a co-organizer of CryptoFin Conference in Tallinn. The conference was dedicated to the recent innovations and current development in blockchain technology, as well as in alternative opportunities for financial instruments and the future of the banking sector. At the two-day CryptoFin conference, more than 30 speakers from all around the world presented their speeches and participated in the discussion panels. More than 300 participants attended the event to know the market trends in blockchain and cryptocurrency industries. 

Other Nominees

Entrepreneurship

Ramona Weber

Member of the Board/Director of Events, recode.law

Entrepreneurship

Kamila Kurkowska

President of Women in Law Foundation & Polish Ambassador of ELTA

Poland

Bio

Kamila is an expert in implementing and executing marketing strategies and innovation within businesses, with previous experience gained in market-leading advisory companies on the Polish market.

A trailblazer of LegalTech initiatives in Poland, Kamila is the creator and President of The Women in Law Foundation, aiming at promoting the role of women in the legal industry, particularly in new technologies. Initiatives of the Foundation include meetups on trending topics within technology, a competition for the best master’s thesis joining law and technology for female students: “Law with a Technology Background”, and hosting webinars in cooperation with ELSA (European Law Students Association) on topics such as Artificial Intelligence or Blockchain. The Foundation also hosts a unique mentoring program for young women lawyers. 

Contribution to Legal Tech

Outside of her activities as President of the Foundation, Kamila takes part in and leads a variety of initiatives to highlight the importance of legal technology in the legal business. In 2020, these initiatives have included acting as a mentor and juror of the Global Legal Hackathon, teaching classes on LegalTech for attorney trainees at the Warsaw Bar Association, and conducting a webinar on PR in legal technology, with the participation of well-known journalists and legal disruptors.

In the upcoming 2020/2021 period, Kamila’s initiatives will also include acting as the Director of “LegalTech and Innovation in the Legal Industry” studies at SWPS University and launching a CEE LegalTech Hub, while continuing her activities as an ambassador of ELTA (European Legal Tech Association) for Poland. 

Other Nominees

Entrepreneurship

Angelina Zinchenko

Chief Product Officer, Trood Legal

Russia

Bio

Angelina graduated from the Moscow State Technical University named after N.E. Bauman with a degree in Robotics and Integrated Automation.  
For more than 5 years she has been helping technology startups to go through the full cycle of forming a vision of their product before launching an MVP (minimum viable product) on the market.

Angelina is contributing to the popularization of modern IT professions in Russia, the application of product approaches in the work of organizations and the digitalization of processes. She has an international certification in project management (ICA-APM) and acts as a mentor and career coach for specialists starting their careers in the direction of project management, product management and analytics in IT.

She also gives lectures and practical webinars on Product and Project Management topics at ProductStar Russia. She is a community member and a contributor at ProductCamp Russia conferences.
She is one of the top 10 authors of the Product Management hub on habr.com, Europe’s largest resource for IT professionals.

Contribution to Legal Tech

Angelina has launched a technology platform for the implementation of digital products and business automation tasks with a low-code approach called Trood.

Trood Legal product is LegalTech startup was created as a collaboration between tech company Trood and leading Baker McKenzie experts.
Angelina as a Trood Legal CPO is responsible for the technical implementation of the product, monitors its quality and compliance with the needs of clients and leads the development team. A design engineer solution has been developed for the needs of specialists, managers and managing partners of law firms to maximize focus on their main goals in their daily work.

Also together with Max Gutbrod (ex-Managing Partner Baker McKenzie) and Holger Zscheige(organizer of the Moscow Legal Tech conferences), she is actively promoting the value of automation of operational processes to Russian law firms as well as the digitalization culture of legal processes in Russia.

Other Nominees