Startup Corner: Lawformer digital contract clause library

Lawformer is a digital library of contract clauses that also allows attorneys to create their own drafting dashboard. Founded in Georgia, at the intersection of Eastern Europe and Western Asia, they are an international organisation that last year became part of Barclays Eagle Labs incubator, having already taken part at Legal Geek. There are a lot of interesting developments in the pipeline. The founders (see below for who they are) tell us all.

How would you describe your company to a friend?

People think practicing law is boring. In a way, it is true. This involves a lot of tedious tasks and paperwork that take up a lot of time. Lawformer aims to change that.  The platform helps entry-level lawyers draft high quality, complex contracts independently, allowing senior lawyers to focus on higher-billable tasks. We do so by providing a digital library of attorney-drafted contract clauses. We drafted all possible/a large number of variations of a single clause so that lawyers don’t have to.

And if you had to describe it to a techy?

Lawformer is a machine-learning-based SaaS platform that compiles digital resources for contract-drafting.

When were you founded?

We started working on Lawformer in Spring 2021. After over a year of development, testing, laughter, and tears Lawformer was successfully launched In July 2022.

By who?

Lawformer is what happens when you put lawyers and techies together.  Founders of Lawformer are experienced transactional lawyers, legal tech and tech specialists previously working with top-tier law firms and international organizations. Three out of five founders of Lawformer (Nako Edisherashvili, Teo Vasadze and George Gugunishvili) collectively have over 20 years’ experience of working as transactional attorneys and contract drafting.  Mariam Chaduneli holds a master’s degree in Innovation Technology and the Law, and has experience leading innovation and digital transformation projects with the World Intellectual Property Organization and the University of Oxford. Lawformer’s tech partner, Noxtton, a multidimensional tech and consultancy company, and the CTO, George Javakhidze, have built global tech products for international brands operating in FinTech, LegalTech, and EdTech. Giving Lawformer in-house technical expertise and enabling continuous product innovation and updates.

Who are your key managers/senior execs?

Lawformers founders are also key managers, involved in day-to-day management of the company, including product development, customer experience, partnership development, strategic planning, etc.

What is your growth strategy?

Since we are our own customers, we know the importance of credibility and trust when establishing a legal presence. That is why our approach to growing is to have lawyers sell our product to other lawyers. We do so through our affiliates who are practicing lawyers working at small, mid-size and boutique law firms and corporations.

Have you received investment?

We received a pre-seed round investment of $100K.

Who are your target clients?

Our main target clients are law students and entry-level lawyers who want to master one of the most demanded legal skills: contract drafting.

Have there been any key changes in direction since you were founded?

Initially, we were planning on developing a smart document builder, which would allow users to draft and modify legal documents on the platforms. After countless hours of speaking with existing and potential customers and collecting feedback,  we changed our vision. Instead, we decided to develop a Word plug-in and Chrome extension that would fit seamlessly into the existing work routine, and allow lawyers to easily integrate our clause database into their existing documents.

What are the key challenges you face in your market?

One of the biggest challenges we face is that the legal market is quite conservative. Lawyers are still less open to digital solutions and changing their traditional work routines. As lawyers bill by hour, they are less interested in saving time and doing work more efficiently. Nevertheless, we are making progress in helping people grasp the fact that doing a job faster and more efficiently can lead to greater customer satisfaction and increased revenue.

What are the most exciting developments you’ve seen in your market in the past year to 18 months?

The most exciting development in our market is the shift in attitudes. The global pandemic has been  a catalyst for legal tech adoption and investment. In fact, 56% of law firms in Europe say that their need for digital tools increased during covid, and they are more likely to use e-signature, contract management and communication tools than they were before.  Globally, 49% of law firms report that they are effectively using technology today, and 47% say they can improve technology adoption and plan to do so. There’s still a lot of work to be done, but we think the industry is headed in the right direction.

Tell us something that people don’t already know about the company?

The idea was born in London when two of the co-founders, Mariam and Nako attended Nako’s law school graduation ceremony. Whilst discussing their future careers with other lawyers, they identified the challenges and opportunities of the legal market and the role they could play in helping law students and entry level lawyers successfully transition into law firms after graduation.

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