The partnership with the US business intelligence provider adds 100 new employees to the firm's team; it taps into law firms' demand for data analytics
Iridium Technology, a provider of financial and business intelligence, has been acquired by London-based legaltech company Big Hand to create a platform for combined financial and operational statistics.
Through the deal, Iridium's tech products will be integrated into the Big Hand platform, including an automated timekeeping app, budgeting, and forecasting functionality, a performance portal for partners, as well as other billing, reporting and business intelligence tools. With this acquisition, more than 100 Iridium employees will join Big Hand, bringing the company's total headcount to more than 350. Tom Jones, Iridium's CEO, will also serve on the board of Big Hand. The worth of the deal was not disclosed.
Managing director of profitability Rob Stote explained: "With Iridium's complementary products along with Big Hand's involvement, you get what I call the "work-to-cash cycle" - you currently have range of financial metrics that can report on from the instant you enter time to the moment you gather time. Our company is the only one in the market that can provide the entire process."
Law firms are increasingly taking advantage of data analytics to learn more about their organizations to help streamline their operations, as a result of client cost pressures and a more competitive marketplace.
Managing director and CEO of BigHand, Sam Toulson, asserts: "Law firms need to improve their efficiency, while also increasing their profitability... This combined partnership enables our clients to access a wealth of data within their firms to take them from the practice of law to the business of law."
BigHand has acquired Iridium for the second time since being acquired by private equity firm Levine Leichtman Capital Partners in August 2020. In November 2020, Big Hand acquired Mason & Cook, an asset management company.
Despite getting approached quite a lot by potential targets, Toulson said that the company is very selective in its sales. He explained that "cultural fit is really important for us when we look at deals which are also benefited greatly from Tom's team's expertise."
In January 2021, Iridium acquired Smart Time Apps, primarily through M&A activities.
According to Jones, "Business intelligence and financial analytics are becoming a necessity rather than to have it nicely. Almost all of the firms in the AM Law 200 have some sort of BI solution - it might be a legacy system, but firms are all investing in it, so you don't want to get left behind."