Resolve Disputes Online (RDO), a startup located in London and founded by Aditya Shivkumar and Joe Al-Khayat, assists parties in virtual dispute resolution through discussion, mediation, and arbitration without having to physically appear in court.
Most transactions may be completed online, including the purchase of a home. What if, however, we informed you that you could also resolve legal conflicts online?
Meet Resolve Conflict Online (RDO), a legal digital platform with offices in London that assists in virtual dispute resolution through discussion, mediation, and arbitration—without entering a real courtroom. Welcome to the world of online dispute resolution (ODR).
This story began with a friendship, much like the majority of startup foundation tales do. Aditya Shivkumar and Joe Al-Khayat are law students who met at Cardiff University. They became close friends because of their passion for mediation and their excitement for advocating for the interests of law students. During their stay in England, they were also among of the youngest applicants to be licenced as mediators.
Aditya and Joe founded a company named “Mediate It Online” in 2010–2011 to provide mediation services to people in the UK online.
“It miserably failed. And the reason I say “spectacularly” is because the failure taught us a lot. We were much ahead of schedule, which is why it failed, said Aditya, a lawyer who is now an entrepreneur. Despite working privately in different cities—Aditya in Chennai as a lawyer and mediator and Joe in London as a barrister, solicitor, and mediator—the pair stayed in touch.
Both of them, according to Aditya, were enthusiastic about and worried about “access to justice.” International norms recognise the right to privacy as a basic one, but according to LexisNexis Legal & Professional, a leading global source of legal, regulatory, and corporate information and analytics, “57 percent of the world’s population lives beyond the protection of the law.”
One of the Sustainable Development Goals (16) of the United Nations is access to justice for all. The majority of individuals are cut off from the judicial system, and Aditya and Joe sought to change that. The team began developing a software platform to close the gap in 2015–16.
In 2017, they incorporated RDO, a startup SaaS (software-as-a-service) B2B (business-to-business).
RDO, according to Aditya, is the first online dispute resolution company created and established in India to cater to the worldwide B2B market.
The startup’s technology platform is flexible and can be tailored to resolve any sort of disagreement.
RDO now collaborates with courts, tribunals, governments, corporations, and professionals in alternative dispute resolution in the US, the UK, Australia, and Southeast Asia to provide B2B online dispute resolution services.
Any sort of case can use RDO’s services, including family law, civil litigation, parking and traffic issues, bankruptcy, and criminal and misdemeanour cases. In the business-to-business (B2B) model, RDO either offers to build up a separate ODR platform for the customer or integrates its software as an add-on module with the tech platform utilised by the client (such as enterprises, courts, and governments). In essence, the business customer utilises RDO’s solution internally to settle disputes under a white label.
RDO receives annual subscription payments from the clients. The Government of Thailand and one of the biggest dispute managers in North and Central America are just a couple of the clients that RDO has. In all, it has finished more than ten projects (including a few pilots) in the previous seven years.