Partnering with Ironclad
By Jess Lee
Published January 29, 2019
Over our 45+ year history, Sequoia has had the privilege of partnering with many great enterprise companies, from Oracle to Cisco to Dropbox to Qualtrics. Today we’re thrilled to announce that we’re partnering with Ironclad, which we hope to see join the ranks of the enterprise hall of fame as it achieves its mission of powering the world’s contracts.
Although Sequoia has partnered with many enterprise SaaS companies, I personally have not. I’m a former consumer founder who normally works with consumer and marketplace companies like The Wing, Wonolo, Setter, and Maven. But I walked out of my first meeting with founder Jason Boehmig energized and excited by the problem he was tackling, because it was one that vexed me too. Here’s a little insight into why Sequoia partnered with Ironclad…
The first things that impressed us were the team and the incredible founder-market fit. Jason is a former lawyer solving a pain point that he personally faced and that is also faced by pretty much every company in the world the tedium of contracts. At Fenwick & West, Jason wrote code to automate some of his team’s work (including the famed open source seed financing docs), which inspired him to create Ironclad together with co-founder and ex-Palantir engineer Cai GoGwilt. Jason and Cai’s thoughtfulness, quiet confidence, and deep expertise in the space really impressed us. We also noted they had hired a fully stacked management team early in the company’s life, showing a commitment to building a company for the long-term.
The product is great and universally useful because every company has contracts. When Jason demo’d the product, it instantly clicked for me. I thought back to my CEO days and the hours I’d spent deciphering redlined documents in Microsoft Word and going back & forth on email chains with lawyers and sales teams about what clauses to drop to get a deal done. I thought back to my startup’s arduous M&A process, where I had to dig up eight years worth of old contracts so they could be audited for legal risk. If only I’d had Ironclad back then, I could have saved so much wasted time. Ironclad automatically generates contracts from templates, gets them approved by legal faster, tracks the approval process for better cross-team coordination, and stores everything neatly and securely.
Third, we love Ironclad’s dedication to its community. Enduring consumer companies take pride in delighting their customers, and are fanatical about converting users to brand advocates. And with the “consumerization of enterprise,” we see enterprise companies doing this too. This is where Ironclad shines. They host community events like Rooftop Law School that gather people who love to discuss the law. They have a tight feedback loop with customers, working side-by-side to understand pain points and develop new features. The ranks of Ironclad are filled with people offering unique insight into the legal community—like former GCs (VP Sales Damon Mino) and even a few former customers who were so thrilled with the product that they joined the team (GC Chris Young). The signs of a delighted and dedicated community are all there, a fact that particularly excites me given my passion for community-building.
We’re elated to welcome Ironclad to the Sequoia family and look forward to partnering on the road to building a legendary company! We hope you’ll join us.
This article was originally published by Jess Lee on Medium.