LegalTech 2012 Pre-Game: Attorney Review Tools

Previously in our LegalTech 2012 countdown, legaltech-2012-pre-game-service-providers/index.html">we covered the e-discovery Service Provider landscape. Today we look at what's likely to be top of mind at LegalTech 2012 in attorney review software and SaaS - based on trends from 2011, and the releases we can talk about so far.

2011 Developments and Pre-Announcements

  • CaseCentral recently announced CloudConnect for self-service data upload to its cloud e-discovery platform - see our latest brief on CaseCentral here.
  • Catalyst finalizes its move to the Amazon cloud with Insight, replacing its underlying Microsoft FAST search engine with MarkLogic, and with predictive coding integration on the way - see our brief on Insight here.
  • Clearwell pre-announces transparent predictive coding for review in its e-discovery platform.
  • kCura continues promotion of Relativity Assisted Review, boasting an early integration by service provider Fios (see our brief here). Look for a quarterly release and new apps.
  • Kroll announced SaaS-based Verve for attorney DIY outside of service engagements in 2011.
  • Recommind announces 227% revenue growth for predictive coding review tool Axcelerate On-Demand YoY, as well as 95% growth for the company overall, with record revenue and deal sizes.
  • Summation, acquired by AccessData in June 2010, has been undergoing a major R&D update and integration with AD's FTK forensic engine and broader e-discovery platform.

Trends to Watch

Based on these (and announcements we can't talk about yet), look for these trends at the show:

  • Predictive Coding Gains Critical Mass. kCura's Relativity-Assisted Review, out last year, and Clearwell's pre-announcement of predictive coding capabilities lend even more clout to the cause of better automating attorney review. Both companies have shown agility in R&D. Their accessible UIs and workflow with a focus on customer-driven development have won widespread popularity. Is this the shot in the arm predictive coding needs to garner mainstream adoption - even for in-house use and acceptance through Clearwell's platform?
  • Cloud-bound and DIY. SaaS-based providers like CaseCentral and Catalyst have been working in the last year for better user self-service. Catalyst has moved to Amazon for additional scalability. Kroll has thrown its hat into the ring with Verve, its SaaS-based tool for use outside of service engagements. Meanwhile, Recommind boasts continued growth of its Axcelerate On-Demand offering.
  • Dashboards, Project Management, and Process Analytics. Process analytics reporting and project management dashboard have been heating up through tools like CaseCentral, and are also arriving in the latest version of Summation. These potentially offer better predictability for service providers using the tools, and transparency for enterprise customers into process and costs. Look for integration in more tools and applications.
  • Small Law and Mid-Market Heat Up. Will Summation and Concordance gain back ground against more agile competitor Relativity with their usability and R&D upgrades of the last year? Can kCura keep growing direct sales from Relativity's strength in the channel against rivals with their own processing engines?
  • Aiming at the Enterprise. ...Will Summation's ongoing integration with AccessData's enterprise e-discovery platform spell "sales synergy" with general counsel - especially against arch-rivals like Guidance and Clearwell? Watch for more review tool sales to the enterprise (even outside of platforms for internal response). Also look for more legal sector titans using general counsel's leverage with law firms in their messaging.

We'll examine the corporate market further with our next post, on e-discovery and information governance software for the enterprise. For more information on the review tool market, see ESG's recently-published Market Landscape Report, The Future of Review.

Check back for more updates as they're announced at show-time next week.