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Exclusive and Trending: Peppermint Technology secures over £7m from Accel-KKR and Scottish Equity Partners

In a significant boost for legal technology cloud provider Peppermint Technology, Silicon Valley tech investment firm Accel-KKR and long-term investors Scottish Equity Partners (SEP) are to invest over £7m to accelerate its growth and further develop their legal SaaS platform, we can reveal.

In a significant boost for legal technology cloud provider Peppermint Technology, Silicon Valley tech investment firm Accel-KKR and long-term investors Scottish Equity Partners (SEP) are to invest over £7m to accelerate Peppermint’s growth and further develop its legal software as a service platform, we can reveal.

Based on Microsoft Dynamics CRM, Peppermint provides the full suite of legal applications, delivered as a SaaS product.

Last year it launched a Dynamics 365 public cloud customer relationship management system that is said to be gaining the interest of Microsoft’s larger enterprise clients, leading Microsoft to say that Peppermint has “shifted gears.”

Speaking to Legal IT Insider last year, Microsoft’s enterprise sales manager Matt O’Callaghan said: “I’ve seen a huge shift in Peppermint between the beginning of this year and now in terms of their capability around CRM online.

“Peppermint were in our eyes a small to medium business partner, but they’ve shifted gears. They have new leadership focussed on looking at the future platform and moving into the cloud space. There has been a lot of feedback about CRM online from traditional customers but a lot of interest from Big Law and Tony [Cox] has been engaged in opportunities around that.”

That follows the arrival of a new c-suite including CEO Gary Young, CFO Nicki Grundy, and Cox, who joined as chief sales officer in May 2018.

Some will undoubtedly query why Peppermint – which has already received over £10m from SEP, including a £1.5m cash injection last summer – needs further external investment. Speak to competitors in the market and they will tell you that Peppermint’s costs are far too high, it is having trouble scaling, and that it should be able to wash its own face by now.

But where the injection of further capital by SEP could have been put down to the fact that SEP was already financially committed to Peppermint, the injection of brand new capital by Accel-KKR, which has $4bn under management, is a different matter. It will, however, naturally raise questions as to how much equity is left in the company.

CEO Gary Young said: “This is a very exciting time for Peppermint. The backing of both Accel-KKR and SEP reinforces that our innovative approach to transforming legal services through technology fundamentally sets us apart in the industry.

“When I joined the company in early 2018, I recognised a real opportunity to make a difference in the legal sector. With this investment, we will continue to enhance our product offering and accelerate our go-to-market strategy, whilst focusing on the delivery of a great experience to our customers.”

Samantha Shows, managing director at Accel-KKR said: “Since we first began conversations with Peppermint, we have been impressed with the sophistication and focus of the management team and their mission to leverage technology to make their customers lives easier and more efficient. We are excited to back this customer-centric business as they continue building their momentum in the market.”

The investment follows huge flux in the practice management system market most notably the recent sale by LexisNexis of its Dynamics based ERP LexisOne. Yesterday (23 January) we revealed that Thomson Reuters Elite is to sunset its Dynamics-based CRM system 3E Business Development (formerly Business Development Premier) after a lack of uptake. The latter move can be expected to open up further opportunities for Peppermint, albeit most BDP clients are in the states.

In the Orange Rag out on 30 January we interview Gary Young about the latest investment. If you’re not yet signed up for the free newsletter, click here: http://www.legaltechnology.com//latest-newsletter/

7 replies on “Exclusive and Trending: Peppermint Technology secures over £7m from Accel-KKR and Scottish Equity Partners”

Put this together with the recent headline “TRE sunsets CRM system BDP” and you get a nice Trojan Horse opportunity for Peppermint’s new stand-alone CRM system.
Its just s shame that Peppermint didn’t design multi-currency into their original product…

As a user of Peppermint which I have shortened for ease to PMT, I would recommend that if any IT expert of partner is out there who are considering acquiring this product, then don’t. Walk away and invest your time and money in something that actually will work. It is akin to sailing yachts. That I was told once is like standing under a cold shower tearing up £50 notes.

I agree totally with what the person who contributed at 7:22pm on the 31st January. I am user so I do not the reasons why it doesn’t work, I just know it’s a terrible offering.

Set regarding – it does not track all emails that you think you have tracked; the preview tool is very poor and sometimes does not work; the click heaviness of tracking an email and attaching a PMT document is excruciating; the integration of PMT via outlook is hopeless and most firms drop that functionality.

The DMS share point functionality is painful. over a minute to open a word document…

The securing of matters doesn’t work

Add ins constantly crash

It is not truly cloud based as your pc needs to be configured to run it. Any changes to IE and Microsoft products mean pain

Conflict search doesn’t work

Accounts – multiple issues

Yes you can make developments to it. However, once you have to upgrade to new versions I am told it is difficult to bring all those across.

If you have got a spare 5-10 CRM developers employed full time to get it to work, then to develop to how you want it to work good luck.

In all it is a clumsy, bug ridden, click heavy system and is one of the dearest products out there.

Great news for Pwppermint that’s the salary’s paid for another year until the next funding round

Would be good to see some of the VC money actually result in improvement to the system rather than back slapping that the VCs have been fooled again

Personally I am quite glad this has happened, given the turmoil in the market the last thing we need is another vendor *withdrawing* from the vertical. Look how awful iManage was until they realised NetDocs were starting to clean up

Good god… another 7m down the pan. How anyone can have anything which resembles Neil’s view (above) on this I don’t know. We have been trying to implement Peppermint for as long as Neil has been convincing the realists he needs to be hired. Leave these judgements for the IT leaders please Neil. This has started getting awkward.

Most people who have properly looked at or lived with Peppermint will say It was a good idea very badly delivered.

Peppermint say they are on the Microsoft platform and the sales pitch is that will make life easier. This is a very over simplistic explanation. Peppermint is actually a rather cobbled together solution based on Dynamics, Sharepoint, Some Office Plug-ins, some custom code written in Silverlight and some local apps to manage documents and time recording.

The interfaces between these applications are not seem less and there are a lot of issues caused by the bad design and interoperability

There are instances where a matter is opened but the SharePoint site is not created properly, Basic things like securing a matter are not possible without manual intervention as there is not a link between Dynamics Security and SharePoint security.

It also lazy to say it is a cloud platform as for full functional use there needs to be several applications installed on the local PC. The system is not fully operational on iPad or browser only.

If plugins are not installed on the local pcthen documents get lost, if scripts copying data between Dynamics and SharePoint fail the end user is not informed and data integrity is broken. Data is stored in multiple places so it is not easy to know which is the correct version .

The system is reliant on MS Dynamics Outlook plug in which simply does not work reliably and emails are not tracked even when the system thinks they are.

To answer the earlier question the reason it is not multi currency is that Peppermint wrote the Finance module in Silverlight as a bolt on. This is done in a way that it not leveraging native Dyamics multi currency functionality.

That alone should lead to questions about the lack of approach from the developers nearly three years since MS end of lifed Silverlight Peppermint still have not removed the poorly performing accounts module.

The development tools are awful and it takes a lot longer to create the basic functionality you would expect of a PMS. Customer on Peppermint 1 are facing a full rewrite of all their code as it is not compatible with CX

Following the MS dream simply hurts end clients who are throwing away years of investment in getting v 1 working

Finally peppermint is not yet host-able in Office 365 and on a old version of SharePoint. The system has experienced a lot of performance issues and outages over the last 6 months.

7 million is not enough to save this so it would not be surprising to see Peppermint drop the accounting and document management elements of the product and focus on CRM only

The only problem in that …

The CRM is not as good as Dynamics365 out of the box

The last few rounds of funding, prior to this one, were pitched as fueling the next round of growth and product innovation. The reality is, they were spent keeping the lights on.

I do wonder how this investment was pitched to Accel-KKR.

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