eDiscovery Daily Blog

Are Investment Activities Slowing Down in eDiscovery?: eDiscovery Trends

Before I begin talking about that, this smiling boy above is my kid Carter.  He turns 9 years old today, so I thought I would give him a shout out.  Happy Birthday, Carter!

As I’ve discussed before and revisit from time to time, to get the latest list of mergers, acquisitions and investments in eDiscovery, you can go to Rob Robinson’s Complex Discovery site.  His site keeps a running list of publicly disclosed mergers, acquisitions and investments in the eDiscovery industry and goes all the way back to 2001 – over 15 1/2 years.  That’s even before Kroll merged with – wait for it – Ontrack!  You thought I was going to say “LDiscovery”, didn’t you?  Anyway, it’s a pretty extensive list containing 301 transactions, so it’s quite a comprehensive list.

With so much data to analyze, Rob has published another story discussing activity patterns over the years for eDiscovery mergers, acquisitions, and investments.  Here are some of the interesting findings:

  • There have been at least 300 M&A+I events in the eDiscovery ecosystem since 2001. (n=301)
  • 2012 has been the most active year for M&A+I events since with at least 49 total events.
  • 2017 appears to be off to the slowest start in terms of total M&A+I events since 2010 (January through May).
  • The decrease in total M&A+I between 2012 and 2013 appears to be the most significant yearly drop in terms of events and percentage of events since 2001.
  • May and June have been the most active months for M&A+I events since 2001.
  • April has been the least active month for M&A+I events since 2001.

Rob also provides a year by year total of activities.  So far in 2017, there have only been 8 M&A+I events.  Eight!  We’re on a pace for only 19 or 20 M&A+I events this year.  Compared to 2015 (40) and 2016 (36), that’s roughly half of the pace of the past two years.  Sure, there have been, as always, some notable events, including the acquisition of Altep by Advanced Discovery and the merger of Discovia and Lighthouse.  But, not near as many as recent years.

So, what do you think?  Is this simply a lull or a sign of a trend?  And, if it’s a trend, why?  Please share any comments you might have or if you’d like to know more about a particular topic.

Disclaimer: The views represented herein are exclusively the views of the author, and do not necessarily represent the views held by CloudNine. eDiscovery Daily is made available by CloudNine solely for educational purposes to provide general information about general eDiscovery principles and not to provide specific legal advice applicable to any particular circumstance. eDiscovery Daily should not be used as a substitute for competent legal advice from a lawyer you have retained and who has agreed to represent you.