Contract administration isn’t precisely an thrilling topic, nevertheless it’s an actual ache level for a lot of corporations. It additionally lends itself to automation, due to latest advances in machine studying and pure language processing. It’s no shock then, that we see renewed curiosity on this area and that buyers are placing extra money into it. Earlier this week, Icertis raised a $115 million Sequence E spherical, for instance, at a valuation of greater than $1 billion. Icertis has been on this enterprise for 10 years, although. On the opposite finish of the spectrum, contract administration startup Lexion at this time introduced that it has raised a $four.2 million seed spherical led by Madrona Enterprise Group and regulation agency Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati, which was additionally one of many first customers of the product.
Lexion was incubated on the Allen Institute for Synthetic Intelligence (AI2), one of many late Microsoft co-founders’ 4 scientific analysis institutes. The corporate’s co-founder and CEO, Gaurav Oberoi, is a little bit of a serial entrepreneur, whose first startup, BillMonk, was first featured on TechCrunch again in 2006. His second go-around was Precision Polling, which SurveyMonkey then acquired shortly after it launched. Oberoi based the corporate along with former Microsoft analysis software program growth engineering lead Emad Elwany and engineering veteran James Baird.
“Gaurav, Emad, and James are simply the form of entrepreneurs we like to again: good, buyer obsessed and attacking an enormous market with cutting-edge expertise,” mentioned Madrona Enterprise Group managing director Tim Porter. “AI2 is popping out a few of the greatest utilized machine studying options, and contract administration is an ideal instance — it’s an enormous challenge for corporations at each dimension and the demand for visibility into contracts is simply rising as corporations face rising regulatory and compliance pressures.”
Contract administration is turning into a little bit of a crowded area, although, one thing Oberoi acknowledged. However he argues that Lexion is tackling a distinct market from lots of its rivals.
“We expect there’s rising demand and an enormous alternative within the mid-market,” he mentioned. “I believe just like how again within the 2000s, Siebel or different corporations provided very costly CRM software program and now you’ve got Salesforce — and now Salesforce is the costly model — and you’ve got this lengthy tail of merchandise within the mid-market. I believe the identical is occurring to contracts. […] We’re working with corporations which can be as small as post-seed or post-Sequence A to a publicly traded firm.”
On condition that it handles loads of extremely confidential info, it’s no shock that Lexion says that it takes safety very significantly. “I believe, one thing that each one younger startups which can be promoting into enterprise or enterprise in 2019 want to handle upfront,” Oberoi mentioned. “We realized, even earlier than we raised funding and obtained very critical about rising this enterprise, that safety needs to be a part of our DNA and tradition from the get-go.” He additionally famous that each new characteristic and product iteration at Lexion goes by way of a safety assessment.
Like most startups at this stage, Lexion plans to speculate the brand new funding into constructing out its product — and particularly its AI engine — and go-to-market and gross sales technique.