Kazeon Cuts Costs of Entry-Level E-Discovery

Its new options include a single- or multi-year license, a usage-based license, or a case-based license

January 21, 2009

3 Min Read
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As e-discovery becomes a must-have application and more vendors enter the market, e-discovery specialist Kazeon Systems Inc. today introduced several new licensing models and drastically cut the entry price for companies looking to get started using the software to protect themselves during litigation. With a variety of new e-discovery services and applications competing for a piece of the growing market, Kazeon's move may be the first salvo in a new e-discovery price war.

Kazeon has been charging $80,000 for a server license. Under the new pricing models, customers can get started using the company's software for $10,000, says Karthik Kannan, vice president of market and business development for Kazeon. "We don't want e-discovery to be a multimillion-dollar, six-month process," he says.

Kazeon is offering customers three options: a single- or multi-year license, a usage-based license where the company will charge by the gigabyte, or a license based on a single case or project. Customers can start with one license and move to another as their needs change. The new approaches are designed to appeal to the vast majority of companies that don't have e-discovery software and can't afford the cost of a perpetual license, says Kannan. While a single perpetual license costs $80,000, he says many customers buy several dozen for performance reasons or to segregate cases.

Kazeon also may be trying to steal a march on competitors that are ramping up their own e-discovery offerings. Many archiving and search and other content management vendors have been adding e-discovery capabilities to their applications, as have online backup and archiving service providers. So the market is getting crowded. The upcoming LegalTech conference and show in New York next month is expected to feature a host of new and enhanced e-discovery offerings.

Christine Taylor, an analyst with the analyst firm Taneja Group , recently noted in a Byte and Switch article that there are more than 100 e-discovery vendors and that more are expected to enter the market this year. The result has been customer confusion and "led to a customer demand for clarity around e-discovery products, and for full integration around the e-discovery workflow process," she wrote. One trend she cited was the development of "partnerships and integration points between e-discovery vendors, with an eye toward offering end-to-end e-discovery. This is particularly true with specialty e-discovery vendors such as those that provide review and analysis."Kazeon thinks it can thrive in such an environment since it offers a complete e-discovery package and can help companies reduce the cost of e-discovery. As enterprises face more lawsuits and regulatory investigations that require them to recover, analyze, and produce large quantities of historical email and other documents, more of them are looking to handle some of their e-discovery needs internally rather than hand the entire job over to law firms and outside service providers that charge by the hour, document or gigabyte.

"If a company does an early case assessment and the bulk of the analysis internally, they can determine whether a case has merit and just turn over to a service provider or law firm the documents that need to be reviewed. There is no need to turn 10 terabytes over to a service provider," Kannan says. "The bottom line is you would still need your service provider, but you would use them a whole lot less."

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