Zantaz to Buy Litigation Software Vendor
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E-mail archiving specialist Zantaz moved to add litigation support software and bolster its compliance and discovery management services this week when it agreed to acquire privately held Steelpoint Technologies for an undisclosed sum.
The Pleasanton, Calif., vendor will also pick up a solid client base should its bid for the Boston-based company succeed. Steelpoint offers litigation support software and services to more than 130 customers worldwide who use it to more efficiently recall files in legal cases.
At a time when customers are concerned about storing and retrieving files that may be admissible as legal evidence in suits, Steelpoint seems to have found its niche, selling its wares to leading law firms and large government institutions.
Already a leader in an archiving field that includes competitors like Iron Mountain, Ixos Software and Legato, Zantaz said in a public statement the purchase, slated to close this month, will make it the single-source provider of digital archiving, compliance, electronic discovery and litigation support.
Though nascent, this could be a $1 billion market, as enterprises and law firms may solicit Zantaz' software and services to help them reduce costs and mitigate the risk of compromising or losing data during the records management and discovery process.
Peter Gerr, senior analyst at Enterprise Strategy Group, called the deal a sensible pact between two companies quietly leading their respective fields.
"What Zantaz has realized is they've developed some interesting and differentiated processes for helping users quickly retrieve and scan old back-up tapes, but they've also developed some key IP to do that," Gerr told internetnews.com, speaking of the company's archiving method. "They realized that litigation support, discovery and being able to get users' critical data back to them is a useful and needed service."
Zantaz can load, scan and index customers' data from back-up tapes and put it into an online database. Zantaz' hosted and on-site e-mail archiving services will be merged with Steelpoint's ability to do quick electronic discovery and retrieval of data for legal cases or compliance.
Steelpoint has specialized in litigation support to help attorneys find information for a legal case for the last 12 years. The company's flagship product, Introspect 5, speeds up that process, according to Gerr. Combine that with Zantaz' high-speed tape cracking and retrieval system, the analyst said the Zantaz and Steelpoint marriage should be a winning combination.
"They're getting together to solve a problem that a lot of IT users have, but they may not realize that they have yet," Gerr said. "They'll certainly realize it in the future."
Zantaz, which will offer the combined products as both licensed software and a hosted service, shored up its e-mail archiving products by acquiring Educomm.
The combined Zantaz/Steelpoint entity, a rare acquisition during a quiet August, will have more than 300 employees and offices in Boston, Chicago, Los Angeles, New York, Ottawa and London.