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Big international players in matter management systems

Three international giants now own matter management systems for law departments. Since ThomsonReuters has acquired Serengeti, the alpha males of the legal industry can duke it out. From a different standpoint, the field of major players in the legal industry who offer matter management software is fuller. Wolters Kluwer came first when it bought TyMetrix and added it to the CT group. Reed Elsevier, owner of LexisNexis and much else law-related, acquired CounselLink and Examen.

Since each of Thomson Reuters, Wolters Kluwer and Reed Elsevier roam the globe widely, we can confidently predict that their respective software packages will also spread internationally.
By contrast, so many of the competing vendors are private and comparatively puny (See my post of Feb. 15, 2011: estimate that 90% of U.S. legal service providers have less than $50 million revenue.).

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2 responses to “Big international players in matter management systems”

  1. Jeff Hodge says:

    Your comparing the big three to small players and referring to them as “puny” is a rediculous comparison. If we were able to see the bottom line of the matter management providers you cite, seperate from the rest of these giants, you would see that they are no bigger and probably smaller than many of the private competitors.
    Please keep the comparatives in context. Private suppliers are not competing against the giants, we are competing against very small, very focused segments within those giants. Increasingly, those segments are lost within the corporate giant and are struggling to grow their business and even survive as those giants look to cut unprofitable businesses in their portfolios. Independents need only compete against the market and don’t have to worry about competing against other business units within the company.

  2. Rob Thomas says:

    Jeff makes a good point – just because a large company owns a matter management system does not necessarily mean that the system has more features or is more widely used than one offered by a smaller company. That being said, there can be some significant advantages to having a large parent.
    The large parent may be able to provide: (1) a large development team that can ensure faster release of innovations; (2) other services that integrate with the matter management platform to save users both time and money; (3) an international sales team to introduce the system into more law departments accelerating the growth of the user community; and (4) a source of capital to fuel rapid growth of staff to better serve customers. Although Serengeti was the most widely used matter management/e-billing system, and consistently garnered the highest user satisfaction ratings, we decided last fall to become a part of the Thomson Reuters organization — because of these and other benefits to our customers.
    Back to Jeff’s point, you don’t see other matter management systems that were acquired by big players necessarily experiencing these same benefits.