Startup corner: Foundation Software Group in Focus

Founded in 2014 by Nate Fineberg – ex-CEO and founder of Interface Software – and Brett Palmer, Foundation Software Group creates SaaS apps for large law firms and counts 10 Am Law 100 firms as clients. You legal veterans will recall that Interface created InterAction, which was acquired by LexisNexis in December 2004. Foundation Software’s focus is currently helping firms to collect and leverage their collective work experience.
How would you describe your company to a friend?
We are a solution-driven company focused on building modern software applications for large law firms. Our first product is an experience management solution, which lets firms leverage their collective work experience and the expertise of their lawyers. Experience management has become mission-critical for all large firms because the market for outside legal services is so competitive. We have a smart team of people who have worked together previously, and the product has been enthusiastically received by our customers.
And if you had to describe it to a techy?
We are a software company developing state-of-the-art SaaS applications for large law firms. We have an awesome development team that was handpicked and who have deep experience and expertise in creating enterprise software applications for large law firms. We are building a platform to serve as the central location for information about a firm’s clients, the work they do, and the lawyers that do it. Firms can leverage the information in Foundation with applications such as Enterprise Search, Business Intelligence, LPM, and Intranet applications. We have been using an agile development methodology, which has been extremely productive in getting the right product to market quickly.
When were you founded?
We began working on our Foundation Experience Management solution in 2014.
By who?
The company was founded by Nate Fineberg and Brett Balmer. Nate (pictured on the home page) is the former CEO of Interface Software. Interface was the creator of InterAction, which is used by more than 70 percent of the AmLaw 100 law firms and was sold to LexisNexis in 2004. Brett was the founder of Scout Solutions, an innovative CRM software company.
Who are your key managers/senior execs?
Nate Fineberg – President
Brett Balmer – Chief Technology Officer
Christine Vorderer – Senior Vice President of Customer Success
Matt Thompson – Vice President of Product Marketing
Bill Block – Director of Product Development
What is your growth strategy?
Our growth strategy is to focus on building great products and delighting our customers. The legal industry is close-knit, and the Marketing, IT, and KM leaders at law firms talk to each other. We know that if we deliver remarkable solutions, we will achieve our growth goals.
Have you received investment?
The company was primarily funded by the founders
Who are your target clients?
Initially, large law firms (300 or more lawyers) around the world
Have there been any key changes in direction since you were founded?
Not really, however, we have added new capabilities that we did not anticipate originally. For example, we added a proposal generation tool because our customers told us that an integrated solution with experience was desirable, and the existing proposal solutions were not meeting their needs.
What are the key challenges you face in your market?
Our focus is on large law firms, and the competitive pressures on this market have never been greater. To support the health of this market, Foundation is a solution that helps firms compete more effectively.
What are the most exciting developments you’ve seen in your market in the past year to 18 months?
Firms realising that experience management is not just a marketing solution, but also a firm-wide imperative
Tell us something that people don’t already know about the company?
Many people don’t know about us because we have not yet made an investment in sales and marketing. Some people may not realise that Foundation is a mature solution with customers who have been live on the solution for over two years. Through word of mouth, we already have 12 large firm customers, including 10 Am Law 100 firms.
* You may also not know that in September 1998 the Insider predicted Nate’s InterAction would be “the next big thing” in legal software – and it was – at the time it only had one UK law firm site.