The Bengaluru-based Saas firm gives companies the agility of a car to conduct “deep searches” on their contracts.
Several years ago, a lawyer and an engineer met by happenstance at a Diwali evening party in New York. A third friend soon joined them to start SpotDraft.
The co-founder and CEO of the company, lawyer Shashank Bijapur, says, “I found the tools and the systems that lawyers used to be pretty archaic.” The other two co-founders are the party’s engineer Madhav Bhagat and their friend Rohith Salim, who serves as chief product officer and chief technology officer, respectively. Bijapur states, “Consider us the Salesforce of contract management.” In any case, that is the scope of the goal. Several of India’s prominent startups, including other SaaS businesses as well as international ones like Airbnb, Notion, Strava, and Panasonic, are among SpotDraft’s clients.
The first wave of software companies in India—Zoho is one frequently cited example—began by providing services to smaller organizations. And, particularly in the wake of the Covid pandemic, they have their sights set on larger “enterprise” clients—companies globally with larger organizations, sometimes millions of their own clients, and the financial resources required to pay for cloud software that can improve operations.
Parallel to this, a new generation of Indian software companies is emerging, led by entrepreneurs who target bigger consumers from the start, primarily in the US but also in other wealthy nations, creating software from India for the entire world. Additionally, they frequently provide services to larger Indian cloud-native firms. Such an example is undoubtedly SpotDraft, which was founded in 2017.
The company’s three founders have a wealth of prior experience in both law and technology. Bhagat and Salim graduated from Carnegie Mellon University and went on to work for Microsoft, Google, and Yelp. Bijapur attended Harvard Law School and practiced law at a firm in New York. According to Salim, SpotDraft now enables companies to perform “deep searches” on their contracts. For instance, “show me contracts where the liability is less than $100,000 and the applicable law is of the state of New York,” he says.
SpotDraft is undoubtedly not the first in this industry, as is frequently the case. For instance, Icertis is a household brand in contract lifecycle management inside the Indian SaaS industry itself, particularly within the Microsoft ecosystem. Established big-tech firms like Salesforce and SAP Ariba are also providing solutions in this field. Bijapur likes to use the analogy of an automobile, comparing SpotDraft to the Mack Trucks of the industry, saying that it offers the agility of a tiny car or hatchback. The business is much past the “product-market-fit” stage and anticipates reaching $10 million ARR this year, he claims.
Businesses can customize their most-used contracts using the platform from SpotDraft, which is a beneficial feature. Then business users can create their own customized contracts on their own or with little to no assistance from their legal departments. To make sure that changes are reflected everywhere, SpotDraft communicates with the relevant IT systems in the background whenever modifications are made.
More capabilities centered on generative AI will undoubtedly be added in the upcoming steps. “For example, let’s say you just have a contract’s high-level criteria. That exclusivity ought to continue even after a specific non-disclosure agreement expires, according to Bhagat. What GPT does is inform you whether the clause is there or whether the contract requires review.
In the past, this would necessitate sending the manuscript to a legal team. He asserts that GPT will now quickly discover such locations. SpotDraft will soon have these features thanks to the efforts of Bhagat and Salim.
The goal, according to Bijapur, is “SpotDraft becomes the one point of truth for a company for anything related to contracts.”