Week 3 of 2015 and here come our third and fourth legal IT acquisitions of the New Year although this time they are both of companies within the ediscovery sector – namely Equivio and Xact Data. And still in the ediscovery sector, we also have news of a rebranding following an acquisition in the fall of last year…
• The big story is the acquisition of machine learning specialists Equivio by Microsoft for a rumoured $200 million – see our story of 8th October for a first report: http://legaltechnology.com//latest-news/start-up-corner-microsoft-to-buy-equivio-for-200-million-say-reports-but-why/
Microsoft has now released the following statement by Rajesh Jha – Corporate Vice President, Outlook and Office 365…
“I’m pleased to announce that Microsoft has acquired Equivio, a provider of machine learning technologies for eDiscovery and information governance. We are making this acquisition to help our customers tackle the legal and compliance challenges inherent in managing large quantities of email and documents.
“Businesses and governments around the world generate enormous volumes of data every day. Sifting through that data to find what is relevant to a legal or compliance matter is costly and time consuming. Traditional techniques for finding relevant documents are falling behind as the growth of data outpaces peoples’ ability to manually process it.
“Equivio’s solution applies machine learning to help solve these problems, enabling users to explore large, unstructured sets of data and quickly find what is relevant. It uses advanced text analytics to perform multi-dimensional analyses of data collections, intelligently sorting documents into themes, grouping near-duplicates, isolating unique data, and helping users quickly identify the documents they need. As part of this process, users train the system to identify documents relevant to a particular subject, such as a legal case or investigation. This iterative process is more accurate and cost effective than keyword searches and manual review of vast quantities of documents. The technology has achieved broad acceptance in the legal community as a valuable eDiscovery tool. Equivio customers include U.S. federal agencies and hundreds of law firms, corporations and other organizations.
“Microsoft is serious about providing customers with tools to manage the legal and compliance requirements that are key to responsible business practices. Office 365 includes robust eDiscovery and information governance capabilities today, and we’ll use Equivio’s machine learning technology to make these vital tools even more intelligent and easy to use in the months ahead. I am extremely excited about the innovative technologies and experienced team we’re bringing to Microsoft as we advance this important work.
• Next up is Xact Data Discovery which has been acquired by Clearview Capital LLC, a private equity firm based in Old Greenwich, Connecticut. The transaction includes a capital investment made by Clearview, with XDD founder and CEO Bob Polus retaining significant ownership in the company. Polus will also continue to lead the XDD management team. XDD celebrated its 20th anniversary and achieved significant growth in 2014. The terms of the deal were not announced.
• Finally, Rand Secure Data, a provider of data governance solutions, just announced that it has rebranded to Zovy LLC. The rebrand follows the acquisition of the company by Alta Equity Partners in September 2014. In addition, Zovy LLC has relocated its company headquarters to Waltham, Massachusetts and launched a new website www.zovy.com