​Nehal Madhani isn't your typical entrepreneur. A first-generation immigrant, Madhani worked hard in school, graduated from University of Pennsylvania Law School, and landed a job at the prestigious law firm Kirkland & Ellis. He was on track for a successful legal career: He was making a six-figure salary and working with high-caliber clients on complex legal issues, but Madhani was frustrated seeing the inefficiencies that wasted attorneys' and paralegals' time.

In the legal world, even the smallest errors can lead to losses or litigation. Consequently, legal professionals spend enormous amounts of time on administrative and repetitive work to ensure no mistakes are made. Although he understood the reasons behind the demands, Madhani's education and entrepreneurial instinct wouldn't let him shake the idea that it didn't have to be that way. Could he employ technology in a new way to eliminate the inefficiencies in the current legal process? Soon, he began devoting his nights and weekends to meeting founders and connecting with the New York City tech scene. He joined the highly selective Startup Leadership Program, started saving money to start his own company, and even taught himself to code.

Based on his experience at the large firm, Madhani devised a simple solution for a frustrating and laborious process: Alt Legal would connect to IP office databases to automatically download the latest information about IP filings and create algorithms to review IP filing data and identify deadlines. Madhani knew that automating the deadlines was a high-risk, high-reward proposition. No existing company had more than the most cursory automation, but Alt Legal set out to tackle the problem. After thousands of hours of programming, legal and technical research, meetings with the USPTO, and detailed customer interviews, the team has built one of the most sophisticated IP docketing platforms in the industry.

Alt Legal's customers range in size from solo lawyers and freelance paralegals to top-tier law firms and large in-house legal departments at companies like Fresh and Ebsco; all are clients who entrust millions of dollars of intellectual property to Alt Legal's software. That and the combination of automation, good design, and trustworthiness are helping Alt Legal grow at a breakneck pace. And this is just the tip of the iceberg for Alt Legal, as there are over 40 million active global IP filings.

The company's focus on innovation and customer success has worked well; Madhani and his team's hard work and determination have earned Alt Legal a significant market share and growing prominence in the legal tech community. One such example is the recent Alt Legal integration with Clio, the law-practice management software and one of the largest players in the sector. Madhani credits Alt Legal's success with more than just raw engineering, legal expertise, and design talent. "What really makes us successful is building a diverse team and keeping a positive, supportive company culture as we grow." The company currently funds itself mostly through revenue from its hundreds of customers, is now on path toward being profitable this year, and projecting tens of millions of revenue in the next five years.

Published on: Apr 11, 2017