Case study


Saved on a single matter


Price drops


Saved over one year

Corteva saves $2.5m on eDiscovery

By utilizing PERSUIT, Corteva launched an RFP to select a preferred eDiscovery vendor to handle all matters for a 3 year period. By enabling PERSUIT’s auto-negotiation feature, 8 vendors reduced their fees by an average of 30%. The process led to an estimated $2.5M in savings/year based on saving $256k/matter. The process and utilization of a best practice template also saved Corteva attorneys time by cutting down the project timeline from 5 months to 1 month.

The challenge

After being spun off from its parent company in early 2019, Corteva Agriscience became both a new company and, at the same time, the world’s largest stand-alone agricultural organization. As a result, the company’s new and growing legal department faced the challenge of identifying its preferred partners and vendors as it looked to build out its standard operating procedures. In particular, Corteva needed to select a preferred eDiscovery vendor that would be deployed for all of the company’s matters.


eDiscovery is a technology-driven legal service line with hundreds of vendors to choose from. The challenge for Corteva was finding either one or several vendors to meet all of its requirements. To tackle the project, Corteva chose PERSUIT’s platform and its sophisticated eDiscovery RFP template.

The solution

Pricing.  Most contracts between clients and eDiscovery vendors include over 20 pricing items (fee per GB for data ingestion, hourly rates for expert testimony and document review, etc.). Therefore, one vendor could appear to be expensive in some areas but cheap in others. Without understanding the total cost impact of each line item, it’s impossible to determine which vendor is the most cost-effective.

To simplify the review, Corteva utilized PERSUIT to describe a hypothetical litigation matter.  By providing specific quantities of data and detail for its hypothetical, Corteva could achieve total price quotes from each vendor on an apples to apple basis, along with an understanding of how the individual price items worked together to impact the total cost to Corteva.

Qualitative Analysis

In addition to pricing, Corteva was able to leverage PERSUIT’s expert-crowdsourced 50 question list to thoroughly understand the strengths and weaknesses of each vendor and to determine if it should take a sole-sourced approach or select multiple preferred vendors.

Reverse Auction

Corteva received 10 proposals from a combination of vendors and law firms on the PERSUIT platform. After an initial review, Corteva was able to eliminate 2 vendors from consideration and invite the remaining participants to a reverse auction, during which each vendor would see the anonymized prices of the other participants. 

During the period of the reverse auction (set at 2 hours by Corteva), each vendor was able to adjust one or more of their 26 line items to make their pricing more competitive. Also, the total quote for the hypothetical matter would be adjusted so Corteva could understand the pricing impact that would result from the line item changes.

We thought this RFP was going to take several months to a year to draft and execute because of the complexity involved. However, because PERSUIT already had a great template that they were able to help us customize, we cut down on the timeline significantly. Plus the eDiscovery insights that the customer success manager provided were super helpful. The results were outstanding” 

Kate Gillespie

Corporate Counsel, Corteva Agriscience

The results

    • Before the auction, the 8 total price estimates for the hypothetical matter ranged from $250K to $764K. 
    • During the auction, all 8 vendors reduced their prices
    • There were 34 price drops during the auction
    • The average total price drop across all vendors was 30%.
    • Price drops ranged from 56% (highest), to 26% (median) to 8% (lowest).
    • Firms revised each of their line items. This allowed Corteva to obtain competitive MSA pricing with its selected vendor that would apply for years on all matters.
    • The average price reductions across the various line items priced by the vendors was as follows:
      • 4 line items (>30%), 9 line items (>20%), and 18 line items (>10%
  • Savings of $256k / matter with a total estimated savings of $2.5M / year.

In just several hours, Corteva was able to (auto) negotiate significant price reductions without any manual effort. A feat that would have taken months if they had taken a typical negotiation approach. Further, by leveraging PERSUIT, Corteva was able to complete the entire process in a single month.

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