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Kaye Sycamore quits Thomson Elite

After a bit of chivying by the Orange Rag, Thomson Elite have announced the following statement…

“After five successful years with Thomson Elite, Kaye Sycamore has announced that she has decided to move on to new pastures.  For family reasons, Kaye is moving to a position that will allow her to spend more time travelling between the UK and New Zealand.  Kaye will remain in her current role as Vice President International for Elite until the end of October, and the six months until her departure will ensure a smooth handover of responsibilities with Kim Massana, Elite's Senior Vice President for their International region.  Kaye will be joining Chrome River after her departure, where she will be leading their market development activity in the UK and Asia Pacific regions.”

This sounds like 6 months gardening leave tho this is the first time we've ever seen the explanation that someone is moving to a position that will allow them “to spend more time travelling between the UK and New Zealand.”

Kaye Sycamore was of course one of the founders of the old Keystone PMS business, now part of Aderant. As for Chrome River Technologies, this is an online expense reporting and management system that was founded about 18 months ago by Alan Rich, one of the co-founders of Elite (now Thomson Elite). Other directors of Chrome River, which is based in Los Angeles, include former Elite vice presidents Dave Terry and Anne Becknell.

Three US top 25 law firms (Jones Day, Paul Hastings and Weil Gotshal) are already running the system – which is supplied on an SaaS model (software as a service) – under the slogan of 'It Fits, It Saves, It Protects, It Rocks'.

16 replies on “Kaye Sycamore quits Thomson Elite”

I sincerely hope, for her sake, that she will actually be spending more time in New Zealand and the UK, not more time travelling twixt the two!

Would the last one to leave TE please turn out the lights.
Meantime, what of live 3E site?

This article is the funniest thing I have read all year (with the exception of the comment above linking the words “live” and “3e” together).

There should be an Orange Rag Award for the best guess of what the 3E acronym represents. Let's kick off with:
“Everlasting Evolutionary Experience”

it IS funny – rumour has it that a certain former Aderant Sales VP was turned down for a job at Elite – is this the role..? answers on a postcard please.
Also, continuing with Aderant, any gossip on the rumours their VC owners are about to sell….? what price Thomson being the new owners..? (now that's funny)

Those of us with longer memories recall that Elite once did make a bid for CMS (now Aderant) but if fell foul of US FTC concerns as it would have created a near monopoly. Oh, and there was also the matter of the Texas drug trafficking conviction – see back copies of Legal Tech Insider for full stories.
As for certain former Aderant sales VPs – well one did leave but that was to take up a job with LexisNexis, those I think he's now stuck in gardening leave limboland.

Charles, I seem to remember that it was CMS (then Solution 6) attempting to take over Elite, not the other way around. It took from November 1999 until June 2000 for the Federal Trade Commission to investigate then veto the bid.

Oops, correctimundo. Mea culpa. But the drugs scandal was bizarre.

We're skipping 3E and waiting for 9K – both product version and price 😉

9K would be Aderant's new release right..? the one promised 2 years ago…? that existing customers have to pay for….? (bitter, me ?)
Seems to me that all the PMS suppliers need to sharpen up their act – too many empty promises.
It would be interesting to see a list of all 'new' firms that each of the big 4 suppliers have taken live in the last 2 years across the globe :-
1) Elite (8 ?)
2) SAP (errr zero)
3) Axxia LN (zero)
4) Aderant (1 ?)

I think the quotes around the word 'new' really say it all. There are no new global firms, merely some shuffling around and consolidation of existing firms, all of whom have existing PMS.
Given that that such existing firms already have PMS then the top, gloabal end of the market is saturated and the only thing we are seeing are swap outs whereby existing parts of a business need to consolidate onto one platform.
As there is a very high degree of functional overlap between PMS there is no compelling, certainly no monetary, reason to change from one system to another (with perhaps the exception of moving to SAP, a case which only the biggest firms would consider, and which is yet to be fully proven) so the fact we are seeing no huge global changes, other than part swap outs, is not difficult to understand.
We therefore see the big legal firms staying with their suppliers, hoping that things improve incrementally, rather than spending 7 or 8 figure sums on changing only to get much the same functionality but with a different set of frustrations.
Given the top-tier saturation, the real 'fun' is happening as the suppliers focus towards the mid-tier (regional, small national firms etc) for sales and market sector.
The mid-tier law firms need good software, good support, easy installation, increasing interoperability (particularly with the Microsoft stack) and of course good ROI. They are also increasingly looking for innovative models of paying for the software, SaaS etc and a move away from the 'per fee earner' model which is seen as penalising growth and success.
And when I say that's what the mid-tier need it's largely because of budgetary contraints, but it's also what the top-tier would have liked too when they were buying systems.
The suppliers who can crack this mid-tier and make it easy for them will probably be the ones who will come out ahead in the longer term (barring further consolidation confusion in the sector) and hopefully the benefits will filter upwards to the larger firms who have stuck with their existing products.
And of course those benefits should be transferred upwards at no cost to the faithful.

I sound far too much like a 3E sales guy here, but having looked closely at 3E recently I'd have to say your comments here are wrong. Though it does what most PMS's do – it does them much better, plus quite a few things that other systems don't currently do, and if deployed well there's a good deal to be gained. You're right, it's not completely 'new' but you wouldn't want it to be. There's only so much you can do to 'revolutionise' the PMS space. It's software to run a law firm after all, so has some pretty standard requirements. I think the guys at Elite should be applauded for taking the risk of going as far as they have, and building something new, and with Aderant's talk of their new system just around the corner (again) it seems they've managed to spur on a little innovation in an industry that has been lacking it for some time.

To clarify, when referring to the lack of 'new' I was referring to 'new' greenfield top-tier clients firms (per the previous post) rather than new product.
However it's certainly good to hear people commenting, even anonymously, that there actually is new and improved functionality out there.

Sounds like a game of battleships.
Is your submarine at 3B?

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