The United States Law Week

Intapp Cuts More Than 45 Workers Due to Coronavirus Crisis (1)

April 30, 2020, 6:38 PM; Updated: April 30, 2020, 8:29 PM

Intapp, a tech provider that works closely with law firms, has laid off more than 45 workers partly in response to a market downturn spurred by the Covid-19 pandemic, the company has confirmed.

That equals about 5% of the company’s workforce, said Intapp President and Chief Client Officer Dan Tacone in an interview Thursday. The workers that were let go came from several of the company’s offices in the U.S. and London, he said.

The legal industry has taken a hit from the outbreak, with legal tech companies and alternative legal service providers taking cost-cutting precautions and law firms implementing their own furloughs and pay reductions to help stay solvent.

Intapp, according to its website, serves a slew of Big Law names along with other professional services and financial firms.

“While we are fortunate to serve clients that tend to fare well during downturns, the unprecedented and drastic economic changes brought forth by the Covid-19 pandemic are far-reaching and many of our clients are adjusting spending and cash management in the wake of its impact,” Tacone said in a separate statement.

Intapp also has trimmed spending in sales and marketing, while accelerating investment in research and development—particularly in the integrated cloud platform that it provides for many law firms, he said.

Prior to the layoffs that were announced on Monday, Tacone said, the company made efforts to cut costs to keep the number of reductions as small as possible. That included making more events virtual instead of in-person, and reducing travel.

Top Intapp officials have been in touch with clients on a regular basis, Tacone said in the interview. He said several noted their own need to cut costs, and possibly may become slower in paying vendors. At the same time, as recently as eight weeks ago, the company had been growing confidently, in part to staff projects that might take one-to-two years to come to fruition.

“We are confident that Intapp and the industry will emerge strong and well positioned,” he said. “We have a very solid strategy going forward and nothing will be changing there.”

The layoffs occurred less than a year after Palo Alto, Calif.-based Intapp finished a three-company buying spree. In some small part those combinations played a role by causing employee “redundancies,” according to Tacone.

Intapp acquired cloud-based marketer OnePlace in May of 2019. The company also purchased gwabbit, which produced artificial intelligence-based contact and relationship intelligence programs, in April of last year, and DealCloud, which helps law firms and other businesses manage relationships with banks and equity firms, in August of 2018.

Intapp’s downsizing comes after several legal tech vendors have confirmed that the pandemic, and the resulting economic stresses on the legal industry, have forced cost-cutting, including in some cases downsizing. Most prominently, the Austin, Texas-based e-discovery provider DISCO confirmed in late March that it had laid off 75 workers.

Other well-known providers have avoided layoffs so far by cutting salaries and engaging in other cost-cutting measures.

Intapp’s recent purchases could be seen in part as “platform plays,” according to observers. Legal industry-focused tech companies “platformize” by increasing the number of individual apps and software programs they offer to law firms and corporate law departments.

Intapp has utilized AI in a number of ways, including through product acquisition as well as the development of its own tools.

Last June, for example, Intapp released a new tool for law firms that uses AI to set and track pricing for client projects. The product, Intapp Pricing, analyzes previous firm work, including time card data, engagement milestones, and client requirements, according to an Intapp video.

(The headline and several story paragraphs have been added or revised to include parts of an interview with Intapp President Dan Tacone.)

To contact the reporter on this story: Sam Skolnik in Washington at sskolnik@bloomberglaw.com

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Rebekah Mintzer at rmintzer@bloomberglaw.com; Tom P. Taylor at ttaylor@bloomberglaw.com

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