iManage Bags Closing Folders Transaction Management Company

iManage has acquired Closing Folders the legal transaction management company. Closing Folders will operate as a product-specific division of iManage. Co-founders Sahil Zaman, who served as Closing Folders’ President, and Gordon Cassie, the company’s CTO, will continue to lead day-to-day business and technology direction for iManage Closing Folders.

Utilising a workflow designed for ‘the way lawyers run deals’, the software helps to manage complex transactions electronically, across multiple parties. The rapidly growing company has doubled year-over-year growth in revenue, active users per month, and active deals per month, they said.

Back in 2018, the Closing Folders team wrote a special feature about what they do and their market segment for Artificial Lawyer – to learn more, see here.

While clearly a life-changing deal for the founders of Closing Folders, which started back in 2013, and a key strategic move for iManage as it builds outwards, according to LinkedIn, Closing Folders has an employee size of less than 50 people, with 16 people listed on LinkedIn.

The acquisition price for the Toronto, Canada-based company, has not yet been disclosed, (and probably won’t be, given that iManage have never said how much they paid for RAVN.)

The deal is interesting as it follows the move last year of Litera to buy Doxly, another well-known deal management platform. With the closure of DealWIP, and this new deal, it’s not clear now how many transaction management platforms remain independent in the legal tech market. (Update: there appear to be some, e.g Simply Agree, is one.)

It’s also another example of consolidation, which seems to be accelerating at present, perhaps driven by the shock to working practices created by COVID-19.

‘We’ve always been intensely focused on enabling our customers to leverage digital technologies to automate and improve business outcomes,’ said Neil Araujo, CEO, iManage. ‘Closing Folders is a strategic addition to our portfolio that has the proven ability to transform transaction-based practices.’

Artificial Lawyer asked Closing Folders’ CTO, Cassie, how the deal came about.

‘As I’ve written about before for Artificial Lawyer, Sahil and I lived the pain of running legal transactions before we started Closing Folders. Despite that, we didn’t actually realise until a couple of years into the business just how pervasive the problem across law firms of all shapes, sizes and jurisdictions. 

Gordon Cassie, CTO, Closing Folders.

After the shock of our initial success wore off, we started to define a goal for Closing Folders, and that goal was to have our product used to run every legal transaction in the world. In iManage, we see the opportunity to super charge our path toward achieving this goal.

We’ve been a partner of iManage for a number of years, but really started to develop a strong relationship with them over the last year. We find them to be a unique player in the legal tech space as a large, management-owned company with a fixation on making customers happy. 

By joining iManage we are allying ourselves with a global organisation that shares many of our core cultural values – most importantly making high quality software that users love. 

Strategically, iManage is well positioned to help us with rapid international expansion, while giving us unique possibilities for deep integrations between our products that drastically reduce friction for users. 

Sahil and I will continue to lead our team as a product specific division of iManage.’  

P.S. The company said that the merger will provide:

  • A single source of truth for transaction documents that limits risk and streamlines processes
  • A single vendor solution that enhances security and governance, lowers cost of ownership, and delivers business agility
  • iManage RAVN’s artificial intelligence capabilities to enable in-depth analysis of transaction data and trends that drive actionable insights and smarter decisions
  • A global, integrated user engagement, training, and support network that extends expert resources across the full breadth of product offerings
  • Global availability as a cloud-based solution