How many hours do companies and employees spend modifying and digitizing documents? For Founder and CEO of Woodpecker Alex Melehy, the answer is too many to be considered productive anymore. As a graduate of Northeastern University with a background in engineering and a passion for software development, Alex saw the need for an accessible and affordable document automation system that would allow businesses, particularly legal firms, to reduce manual labor and save time across the board.
Woodpecker started one and a half years ago as an NU alumni-led venture going through the IDEA Venture Accelerator process. Today, it is a full-blown business that has since garnered significant market traction, expanded its team across multiple countries and met its growth goals for 2018. Not to mention that Woodpecker has since become a recipient of IDEA’s Gap Funding grant, which is awarded to ventures that have a significant resource gap or need, and is deemed necessary to fuel continued growth and development.
When asked how Woodpecker was going to use the funding, Melehy explained the company’s need to further develop and extend the platform’s features and capabilities — all of which were decided upon based on existing customer needs. Other plans for the gap funding include developing and implementing a more aggressive go-to-market strategy, one which emphasizes entry into different verticals and targeting industry associations to obtain new customers.
As for the IDEA Venture Accelerator process, Melehy had nothing but appreciation for the entire system, highlighting the fact that the team is there to help give ventures advice, support, and guidance. His main piece of advice for future ventures going through the process: never turn down free help!
If you are interested in starting your own venture and being part of the IDEA process, please visit this page to sign up for an upcoming New Venture Orientation.
IDEA Gap Funding is a non-equity educational grant available to ventures in the GO stage of IDEA’s process. Applicants may apply on a bi-monthly basis where their business plans are reviewed by IDEA’s student Investment Committee upon being selected to pitch plans to IDEA’s Advisory Board. Applicants may receive up to $10,000 in funding.