In the recent years, startups have catered into basic requirements of the common man. Filing RTIs, taxes, finding medical help, hiring a cab, getting school and college admission assistance – Indian entrepreneurs have found solution to all these basic day-to-day necessities using technology.
Here’s a startup, that helps the common man and corporate groups solve legal troubles using technology. Vakilsearch is an automated online-platform that offers one of the widest range of legal services, such as company incorporation, trademark and patent registrations, through in-house and marketplace experts. Their hassle free, accountable and customer centric approach to address the legal requirements at best value, has made them one of the most sought after online legal services provider in the country.
National Law School, Bangalore graduate, Hrishikesh Datar started exploring the potential for leveraging technology to disrupt the legal services sector in India and offer individuals and entrepreneurs a standardized and hassle free legal service.
“We started off by targeting the main pain areas of a small business owner - setting up a business, trademarking a brand name, logo or slogan and drafting basic documents and contracts. We gradually evolved our service portfolio to include accounting, taxation, tax filing and even payroll services. Today, our platform handles the entire gamut of legal services for a small business owner - end to end,” Hrishikesh said.
“Our venture has the singular vision of making the legal process simple and easy for the common man and businesses. We started in 2011 and have since then helped thousands of clients (literally) get simple and affordable professional support. To be a little more specific, we help with setting up your business, getting a Trademark, Copyright or Patent, preparing their legal documentation, advice and support with tax registration. We have recently begun offering accounting and corporate compliance support as well,” he added.
The challenge of changing the mindset
With several pending cases and tiring documentation, the common man is often jittery about any legal procedure in our country. “The challenge is one of mindset – people are too used to meeting a lawyer or chartered accountant face to face. Once we convinced people that online process was more effective, as reliable and much more efficient, things started to change. As with any start-up, drawing good people to the team was a challenge as well,” he said
Working with marquee investors and accelerators
The company received its Series A funding from Kalaari Capital in 2015, and is currently part of the Microsoft Ventures Winter’15 batch. Hrishikesh believes that Kalaari is passionate about young, disruptive, technology driven companies which makes them completely fit the bill at the firm.
Talking about their participation with the accelerator he said, “MS Accelerator gave us the opportunity to build a network within the small group of highly energetic, funded and hungry businesses in India. Working with them helped us greatly as we went about building our network of lawyers and strengthening our technology backbone. During our work with them, we have automated large aspects of our infrastructure and scaled our team - not to mention making great friends in the community.”
To current date, Vakilsearch has serviced more than 140,000 clients including some household names which include Taxi For Sure and Sulekha.com. Since its inception in 2011, Vakilsearch has been responsible for almost 3% of Indian business registrations, with an average of 400 companies and 900 trademarks each month.