Business publisher and information group, CCH, today acquired the rights to market exclusively the products of Ringtail Solutions in the Asia-Pacific region.
To do this a new subsidiary of CCH has been established, Ringtail Asia-Pacific.
The acquisition is a further advance by CCH into the legal market, adding more legal software to current legal content products.
Ringtail Solutions has two main products, CaseBook and CourtBook, which are the document management programs used to conduct most electronic legal cases in Australia.
This software was used to manage high profile cases such as the Longford Royal Commission, ABA 'Cash for Comments' Enquiry, GlenBrook 'Rail Disaster' Enquiry and the current King Edward Memorial Hospital 'Baby Deaths' Enquiry.
The software suite is web-based and facilitates paperless case preparation by lawyers in a collaborative environment.
In addition, it enables electronic trials where court officials and lawyers can search for and access relevant information on their desktop PCs.
Ringtail has achieved impressive market penetration with eight of the top 10 legal firms in Australia and five courts having adopted the system.
According to Mr Willem van Zanten, CCH regional director Asia Pacific, the acquisition had strategic value for CCH, providing a strong base for further expansion into the legal market.
"The inevitability of the paperless trial becoming widespread and the cost savings this brings means the software will be taken up throughout the court system and legal profession," Mr van Zanten said.
"CaseBook and CourtBook will also enable us to take our other products to the desktops of the legal market and add value to the large amount of legal content CCH already provides," Mr van Zanten added.
Mr Greg Wildisen, Director of Diskcovery, Australia's leading distributor of Ringtail Software, said there would be benefits for Ringtail from CCH's strategic vision.
"We believe that current clients will appreciate CCH's strong client focus and we are excited about future integration prospects and product offerings," Mr Wildisen said.
CCH has the rights to the Ringtail technology in the Asia Pacific region and, through its new subsidiary, Ringtail Asia Pacific, will market, sell and support Ringtail products throughout the region.
Ringtail software has recently been adopted by two top tier law firms in New Zealand.
CCH plans to add Ringtail to its Singapore product range in the near future since all courts in Singapore are in the process of becoming "e-courts" by December 2001.
Mr Phil Farrelly, general manager of the new subsidiary, Ringtail Asia Pacific, said making the transaction was the best case outcome for all.
"Ringtail can maintain the flexibility and innovation possible in a boutique company and also offer the secure and strategic pathways made possible by the support of a large corporation," Mr Farrelly said.
Established in 1969, CCH produces expert content in the areas of tax, law, accounting and human resources and is a subsidiary of international business publishing group, Wolters Kluwer, which recorded sales for 2000 of A$6.7bn.
ISSUED FOR: CCH AUSTRALIA LIMITED
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION: MR WILLEM VAN ZANTEN, REGIONAL DIRECTOR ASIA PACIFIC, CCH AUSTRALIA LIMITED, TEL (02) 9857 1300
MR PHIL FARRELLY, GENERAL MANAGER, RINGTAIL ASIA PACIFIC,
TEL (03) 9650 5778 MOB. 0402 309 664
ISSUED BY: WESTBROOK COMMUNICATIONS, CONTACT: IAN WESTBROOK, TEL (02) 9231 0922 MOBILE 0407 958 137