Technology companies are notorious for aggressive marketing, whereby they either announce products that do not exist or wildly exaggerate their capabilities. So when ZANTAZ announced its new Desktop Legal Hold solution alongside an image claiming that it can help you “become your company’s superhero”, I was naturally wary. Reading the press release only heightened my suspicion that ZANTAZ’s marketing department may be running ahead of its product development team. For example:
- The release cannot name a single customer using Desktop Legal Hold. The best ZANTAZ could do was quote a retired executive from BASF, who spoke about the potential value from this type of solution (not the actual value realized from this specific solution by a current customer);
- ZANTAZ makes a series of wild claims about the solution. My personal favorite: “Desktop Legal Hold automatically overcomes spoliation, obfuscation, misclassification and non-classification of important data” Need I say more?
- Desktop Legal Hold is not listed in the “Solutions” or “Products” sections of ZANTAZ’s website. Perhaps I’m missing something, but I can only find it mentioned in the press release.
All of this will be re-assuring in the short-term to Guidance, whose Encase product is the leading desktop collection and preservation tool. I doubt customers will be rushing to entrust something as important as their legal holds to ZANTAZ until the product looks more proven, and its capabilities are more clear.
That said, ZANTAZ has clearly signaled its intention to attack Guidance’s core market. ZANTAZ wants to make it easier for its customers to get data into its archives. And it wants a piece of the revenue in this market: from Guidance’s quarterly financials, if you deduct revenue from services and its e-discovery product, it looks like the Encase business is worth $30-35M per year in license revenue. That’s a meaningful prize for ZANTAZ.
It will be interesting to watch how this develops.