The story so far… Six years ago Vin Murria sold the CS Group, which subsequently became part of the IRIS Group, and left the company. Now she is back and her (she is the CEO) AIM-listed Advanced Computer Software Group plc has acquired Computer Software Holdings Ltd (which includes the IRIS Legal business) from the owners of the IRIS Group. Now read on…

As part of the assimilation of IRIS Legal within the Advanced Group of companies, the legal software business now becomes a business unit within the Advanced Business Solutions division (there are three divisions within Advanced – the other two are Advanced 365 Managed Services and Advanced Health & Care) and will now be known as Advanced Legal.

Advanced Legal has its own board comprising Doug Hargrove as managing director (Doug Hargrove was the MD of IrisLegal from July 2010) plus Mike McGoun as chairman (until its acquisition by BT earlier this year, Mike McGoun was the chaiman of the Tikit Group) and Jim Chase as a non-executive director. (Jim Chase was the last independent managing director of the legal systems supplier AIM and over the past four years has led the Advanced Health & Care division as it has expanded from a £10 million to a £30 million business.) Doug Hargrove will also be a member of the group operational board, which includes the heads of all the Advanced operating divisions, which in turn reports to the group board (which includes Vin Murria as CEO and also Mike McGoun as a non-exec director.)

So what happens next? We had a meeting with Vin Murria last week at which she outlined some of her plans. Full details will be released over the coming weeks to avoid swamping users but among the key elements are:

• a continuing commitment not to end-of-life any current legal systems (the original IRIS end-of-life decision was one of the first policies Doug Hargrove reversed in 2010)

• a reinvestment in Progress-based solutions, including the Videss Legal Office system

• the integration of Advanced Legal products with other applications within the Advanced software portfolio, including CRM, business intelligence, document management, HR, payroll, managed/cloud services and mobility/security