Comment: Immigration Hurricane

In 2020, there was an intense technology investment into immigration on multiple fronts. Venture Capitalists, Technology companies worldwide and Silicon Valley got in on the action. Please see below the estimate of the activity that we have learnt about.

Mergers & Acquisitions :
Acquired Amount Estimated by ILW Acquiree
Tracker $10 Million Mitra Tech
Rapid Visa $7.5 Million Boundless
Simple Citizen $7.5 Million Fragomen
INSZoom $20 Million MitraTech

Capital Raises:

Company Reported Amount Kind of financing
Legalpad $10 Million raise
Boundless $7.8 Million raise Series A
Terra Datta $3.4 Million raise
Boundless $7.5 Million raise

Approx $75 Million in investment is listed in the two tables above. We believe that this is only half of the total investment--the other half has happened in stealth mode. So, we project the total investment in 2020 was around $150 Million into immigration technology. We expect at least another $150 Million will be invested in 2021.

While $150 million is spare change for silicon valley, it is a major capital infusion for the immigration field--enough to turn the whole field on its head--especially given what this technology enables in the field. The manner of immigration processing is changing as is evidenced by Fragomen jumping into family immigration, two major immigration technology companies INSZoom & Tracker under the same roof, immigrant-facing companies like Boundless and Rapid Visa consolidating and significant capital infusions into many existing and new immigration technology players. Get ready for changes coming--the immigration processing field will likely be unrecognizable in two and a half years. Specifically, we can expect the following changes:

  • Massive changes in the way business is conducted within immigration law firms and in-house immigration departments within companies.
  • Bringing in family immigration from mostly unrepresented to somewhat represented--the whole field of immigration is expanding.
  • Changing roster of players and a new dynamic between immigrants and law firms, as well as a new dynamic between law firms and in house immigration departments
  • Connecting of disparate areas of immigration turning the field upside down--such as family immigration being integrated into employment immigration deeply.

Here are some To Dos to consider:

  • Younger lawyers comfortable with technology have an advantage. Immigration practice will require increased comfort with technology. If you are comfortable with technology, use it, if not, learn to get comfortable with technology.
  • Firms and companies alike should look at their technology strategy, their technology budgets, and have a process for re-evaluating the tech strategy every quarter or six months.
  • The biggest opportunity will be accessing immigration processes that are currently not using law firms--that expansion will likely be a 9-figure added business for the immigration law field. Keep an eye out for such opportunities.
  • If you are an attorney towards the end of your career, this may be a good time to look for an exit strategy by making a deal with firms that will be taking on the technology challenge. With the Biden sun shining on the entire field of immigration it may be a good time to fold’em when you can’t hold’em.
Stay tuned to Immigration Daily as we report on this onrushing sea change in the immigration field.