The tale of Docracy’s year-long journey is a fun one. When Matt Hall and his partner John Watkinson first went into the Hackathon last year, the only goal was to get a prototype working for an idea they had, a GitHub for legal documents. Sure, a win would’ve been nice, but the main goal was to push out a prototype they could pitch to investors (instead of just an idea) with a firm deadline hanging over their shoulders.
But alas, Docracy took home the top prize despite the fact that they were the first of more than 100 presentations that day. And after last year’s Disrupt NYC (tickets to this year’s Disrupt here), the story only gets better.
The original plan was to push out a fully functional Docracy within a week or so of the Hackathon, but after a chat with a more legal-savvy friend the pair realized that a little extra scrutiny to any liabilities was in order. That week turned into a full seven months, with a hard launch in December of 2011. In November, just a month before, the company received a $650,000 seed round led by First Round Capital. Vaizra Investments, Rick Webb and Quotidian Ventures also participated.
Matt and John were able to quit their jobs and focus on Docracy full time. And today the service already has over 10,000 users.
There’s something to be said about the power of a successful Hackathon presentation. It’s not only true with Docracy, but Group.me (which was recently acquired by Skype) won the TechCrunch Hackathon as well and has since gone on to fall under the almighty Microsoft umbrella.
Disrupt NYC is set to be one of our biggest shows yet, with returns from Michael Arrington and MG Siegler, along with a variety of big names like Marissa Mayer, Sarah Tavel, Fred Wilson, and David Lee and more. It’s going to be huge.
If you’re interested in checking out Disrupt and/or the Hackathon yourself, tickets are still on sale here and info on the Hackathon can be found here. Companies who want to join the Battleground can apply for the last remaining spots in Startup Alley. You can find the full agenda here.