San-Francisco-headquartered automatic time capture solution Zero Systems today (1 March) announces its $12M Series A investment round, led by seed venture capital fund Streamlined Ventures, bringing its total funding to date to $23m.
Zero has grown over the past year from 23 to 80 people, with key hires including chief revenue officer, Eelco van Maaren, whose past roles include senior director of enterprise sales at Salesforce, and who was hired in October 2021 to drive Zero’s go to market strategy. Head of sales Kevin Podd joined in May 2021 from Exterro, where he was regional vice president of sales.
Speaking to Legal IT Insider about the Series A, which took place in December, CEO and co-founder Alex Babin said: “Funding came at the right time as we were growing and needed more people. What happened is that we grew in terms of people, clients, revenue and products, so we have seen growth on all fronts. We have Apollo launched in November, which is a big deal – Apollo automatically captures time spent on your desktop, extending what we do on a mobile, so it’s the same feature set.”
Babin says that one major change over the past year is that Zero has changed its model from identifying as a software company to an automation company. “We have APIs that other partners can use to leverage our AI engine in their products, and we are growing the partner ecosystem to become a platform play, which is much more scalable,” he told Legal IT Insider
Babin and the team started looking to raise in around September and have known Streamline Ventures since they went out for seed funding. Babin said: “Some of the guys are new and some are existing. They all see that putting money in will help us to grow faster.” The other participants in the fund include 468 Capital, AltaIR Capital, PBJ Capital, Gutbrain Ventures, s16vc, AiSprouts VC, and Paul Grewal.
The new funding will help Zero to focus on its marketing activities and Babin says: “We’ve been quiet and 2022 is the year for building our ecosystem in terms of our technical partners and expanding our marketing capability.” Zero already works with legal document management and practice management leaders including OpenText, NetDocuments, Aderant and Intapp, but Babin says: “The plan is very much to extend that network.” Zero will also be launching a couple of new products, so watch this space.
According to Babin, Zero now works with nine of the Am Law 200 law firms.
“Zero’s software automation platform is the perfect solution for white-collar workers,” said Streamlined Ventures general partner Ullas Naik in a statement. “For law firms and other services firms, most of the other generic productivity and automation tools don’t suffice, as they have very specific security, compliance, and regulation requirements that apply to their workflows. Zero has targeted and garnered significant adoption in Big Law and has since expanded into other white-collar industries such as consulting and accounting. We are very excited to have invested in each of Zero’s financing rounds since their seed round and we look forward to helping the company become a significant market leader.”
“Zero’s technology sits upon and optimizes existing legacy systems. It provides a secure layer of automation that runs in the background, using autonomous virtual agents to mimic human decision-making in high-value, repetitive processes like information prioritization and data classification,” said Gevorg Karapetyan, CTO and co-founder of Zero. “This automated intelligence sits on billing, email, and document management systems, enabling organizations to increase productivity and accuracy at the user and firm-wide level.”