Improves search capabilities in information management platform
Security giant Symantec has announced it will buy eDiscovery firm Clearwell Systems in a deal worth $390m, net of Clearwell’s existing cash balance of approximately $20m. Clearwell will sit within Symantec’s Enterprise Vault eDiscovery unit and tap into its growing information management division.
Clearwell Systems specialises in eDiscovery, which Gartner defines as, "the identification, preservation, collection, preparation, review and production of electronically stored information associated with legal and government proceedings." The company’s technology enables businesses to find and store data where it cannot be altered for checking by a legal team, known as legal hold.
The move will increase competition between Symantec and other eDiscovery firms such as Recommind, Guidance Software, Autonomy, kCura and ZyLab. Symantec said Clearwell will be integrated into its archive and backup group.
Quoting Gartner, Symantec added that the eDiscovery market is growing at 14% a year and will be worth $1.7bn by 2014. It fits well with the $2.7bn archiving market which Symantec is a big player in, the firm said.
There is some overlap between Symantec’s Enterprise Vault and Clearwell’s technology when it comes to actually searching data. Beyond that Symantec’s product is focused on the archiving and storage of data while Clearwell’s technology, once it has found the necessary data, moves towards analysing and reviewing it.
"As information continues to grow at unprecedented rates, the biggest challenge for customers is to protect, manage and backup this information as well as have the ability to categorize and discover it efficiently," said Deepak Mohan, senior vice president, Information Management Group, Symantec. "The acquisition of Clearwell’s market leading electronic discovery solution will further increase Symantec’s ability to get the right information, to the right people, at the right time, while reducing overall legal review costs and limiting risk."
Aaref Hilaly, president and CEO, Clearwell Systems, added: "Archiving and eDiscovery are two critical elements of information governance. By joining forces and combining the industry’s leading archiving solution with the industry’s leading eDiscovery solution, we will be uniquely positioned to deliver a seamless, integrated information governance workflow, benefitting both Symantec and Clearwell customers."
The deal is expected to close in September this year and will have a positive impact on Symantec’s revenue in FY2013, the firm said.
Clearwell Systems is headquartered in Mountain View, California with another office in London. It currently has around 200 workers.