Erika Haiste (Izilaw): “Don’t be restricted by the traditional way of doing things, look past it!”

Sep 04, 2018



Iizilaw makes it possible to contact professionals, who are adept and available to meet your needs, online, 24 hours a day, seven days a week a. The site does not make recommendations, but establishes a shortlist of professionals relevant to your search. We met with Erika Haiste (MSc in Management Programme Grande Ecole, 2012), co-founder of Izilaw, in charge of both marketing and partnerships.

What was the most difficult aspect of launching Izilaw?

Finding the CTO (Chief Technical Officer) of our dreams! Because we obviously wanted the impossible, that is to say:

  • a brilliant developer with enough experience to create a site from scratch
  • excellent in security expertise
  • hardworking, good natured, the same values, and true fit with the team (Charles and me)
  • a good teacher and good manager (we were already planning ahead)

Eventually, after several months of hard research, we found our rare pearl (Nicolas) without whom nothing would have happened!

Who are your main customers today?

We are a marketplace, and as such we have 2 types of clients: legal professionals (lawyers, notaries, bailiffs) and users who are liable to become their clients. Currently, the majority of our registered professionals are lawyers in Paris, because we needed to target certain type of professional in order to test the platform and its traction with users. In light of the test’s success, we are now approaching lawyers, bailiffs and notaries throughout France.

If you had to launch izilaw from scratch tomorrow, what -if anything- would you do differently?

I would change the company’s place of registration! We registered it in Eze (near Nice) because our team is based between Paris (Charles and me) and Eze (Nicolas) and everyone told us that we should register outside Paris. However, ultimately, we would have been better off registering it in Paris or the Paris region, because the administrative procedure was so much longer and more complicated in Nice.

What do you think about the legal profession in France, today?

We have made the following observations on the legal profession in France:

The law is very opaque and inaccessible to most French people. As a result, the law and its related professions (lawyers, bailiffs, notaries) often scare litigants, which leads to a noticeable loss of potential litigants in France.  Today, it is fundamental that we work together to bring the French closer to law and justice, and that is why we developed izilaw! We want to become a true partner to legal professionals by helping them develop and manage their clients.

In 140 characters twitter, what is the best advice you would give to a student of emlyon business school?

Make the most of your school years and learn everything you ever dreamed of learning! And, don’t be restricted by the traditional way of doing things, look beyond it! :)

Your favorite app?

Citymapper* because I can’t sit still! ;)

* Citymapper is a mobile app. for urban travel and itineraries.

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