Alan Rich leaves Thomson Elite next week
Alan Rich, one of the founders of the accounts & billing systems specialist Elite (now Thomson Elite) is to leave the company he helped create nearly 20 years ago. The official statement from Thomson Elite president & CEO Steve Buege says “As many of you know, Alan Rich, our Chief Strategist, has a deep and passionate entrepreneurial streak. After 20 years with Elite, helping lead and grow it from a small data processing start-up to the global leader in legal enterprise software that it is today, Alan has decided it is time to give up his part time role at Elite and once again chase his entrepreneurial interests full time. Alan’s last day will be Wednesday, February 14. He has, however, agreed to serve in an advisory capacity for some time into the future as needed.
“Alan Rich and his father, Harvey, started Elite Data Processing in 1988. Since that time Alan has seen the company through many changes and many new product releases. When Elite was acquired by Broadway and Seymour in 1994 the company was renamed Elite Information Systems. In 1999, after the divestiture of several Broadway and Seymour assets, Elite became the publicly traded Elite Information Group. In 2003, Thomson acquired the company and Elite became Thomson Elite.”
In the UK Rich will be remembered for his evangelising days in the mid-1990s when, armed only with a laptop running the Elite Legal Billing System on Unix & Informix, he almost single-handedly secured the company's first wins at Clyde & Co and A&O – in the process leaving longer established players wondering what had hit them.
Rich is the second high profile departure from Thomson Elite in under a year – Chris Poole, the company's long time president & CEO Chris Poole stepped down last August. Commenting on Rich's departure, another former senior exec at Elite said “Alan is the latest casualty… He walked and he has a new plan but is not talking. Shock and awe at Elite.”