GetLegal: Aiming to accelerate the legal sphere for startupsRicha Maheshwari
It was about one and a half years ago when Akshat started working on his first venture, Zeat, and being a young entrepreneur, faced innumerable problems while incorporating it.“I had no one to guide me through then,” recollects Akshat Singhal.
Unfortunately, “we could not become that big partly due to wastage of my time on all these legal aspects and not being able to focus on what I did best. So, I started working on this idea from December 2013 and we are here,” he admits.
After having tasted the bitter fruit, he along with Ashish Yadav, founded ‘Get Legal’, an open platform for everyone to discuss and enquire about law related queries. Be it business or personal, a user gets useful advice in the form of answers only from lawyers and law students. Here, one can find future lawyer/legal consultant online without having to look out for them.
It also serves a purpose for lawyers to connect with their future clients and get noticed for their work and achievements by their contemporaries. "We also aim at providing the exposure that students currently pursuing law deserve and we give them a platform to share their wisdom and learn from others and get noticed in the legal arena even before actually stepping into it," says Yadav.
How does it work?
With a team of 6 right now and innumerable applications pouring in to be a part, GetLegal aims at achieving free and transparent flow of legal information within the users. "Being a legal startup we have a lawyer and a law student in the team. We are also backed up and advised by a law firm quite experienced in dealing with legal issues startups and businesses face regularly. We are also looking at some new additions later in the coming months to make our team even stronger," says Singhal.
Akshat Singhal(21), is in charge of basically everything that runs into the company. Right from developing new features, ideas and products, to sitting with techies and trying to solve their issues. Belonging to an engineering background gives him the right mindset to understand the tech world as well as business side of things.
Response so far
"Starting with just one guy to making a team of 6 dedicated and enthusiastic individuals who believe in the idea more than anyone else is itself a journey of extreme fun," says Singhal, adding, “entering into a legal startup ecosystem from an engineering background after understanding the rigidity and inefficacy of the current system with a desire to change it was a challenging task.”
On July 7, they launched the beta for a week for selected lawyer groups and startup circles only through Facebook to test their product and analyse its prospect online. At present, they are following a zero budget marketing strategy online and indulging in aggressive offline marketing.
Introducing the legal space to the online world was quite a challenging task for them but today, “we are getting a pretty good feedback from our users and many experienced lawyers. At the end of the first week of the launch of the site, we had 100 user sign ups, 20 lawyer sign ups and 30 law student sign ups,” says Singhal.
“As far as our validation is concerned we have spoken to more than 50 early stage startups and young entrepreneurs who have been facing or have faced similar problems and all of them agreed the need for a community like this,” says Yadav. “Talking to law students also gave us some pretty good feedback for the platform and they would be willing to join in return for the exposure and learning that has been offered to them,” he adds.
“As far as the lawyers are concerned, we spoke to about 50 lawyers and in the end we found out that 7 out of every 10 lawyers we spoke to are willing to sign up for such a unique platform. The remaining were not that excited about something like this as they were not very tech savvy. We now clearly understand the right approach that would interest our target users,” they say.
Growth and sustenance
At present, there are only a handful of legal startups such as, VakilSearch, indiankanoon, TaxMantra and more, in India and “competing only with a handful of startups in the legal space with a pretty solid and improving product in hand, we are sure that we would do well in the future as well,” says Singhal.
The self –funded organisation is looking for an angel investor/early stage investor as well as someone who can work closely with the team in developing Get Legal. With no investment on marketing, the monthly sign up growth rate of the organisation is nearly 5-10% monthly. “We would target higher growth rates moving towards paid and targeted forms of online and offline marketing,” says Yadav.
Moreover, in the coming months, they are targeting to have more than 400 law schools in India, have more than 4 lakh lawyers on board for helping hundreds of users on a daily basis and also retain them. Alongside, they will be launching a mobile application for all the smartphone users across the nation in a couple of months.