Evolvable Contract Spreadsheet
Lead PI: John Clippinger
A Computational Spreadsheet
Traditionally, negotiations between venture capitalists and entrepreneurs have been onerously lengthy and complex, resulting in static, often times incomprehensible contracts. The entrepreneur is frequently at the greatest disadvantage. In order to explore how evolutionary approaches might be applied to contract law, Law Lab developed a computational contract called the Evolvable Contract Spreadsheet. Using the example of a Wilson Sonsini standard venture capital term sheet, the demo tool allows users to easily understand the implications of different provisions and clauses that are typically negotiated.
The Evolvable Contract Spreadsheet allows all parties (founders, management, employees, angle investors, series A, B, and C investors) to explore what-if scenarios for the implications of not only different business scenarios and funding options, but also how provisions impact different funding and ownership structures. The demo tool provides six different financing scenarios from the simple case of three successive up financing rounds to rounds that vary significantly in the valuation of the company.
The genetic programming used for developing the pilot was developed in cooperation with Icosystem. They have a unique platform for developing and deploying genetic programming applications. The user interface used to present the results was derived from their platform, making them a valuable partner in the development of this tool.