After three years of quiet growth and development of its cloud-based legal entity management software, the Calgary, Canada, company Athennian is today announcing an $8 million CAD Series A investment, on top of a previously unannounced $2 million CAD seed financing round last year, for total funding of $10 million CAD.
Athennian provides software that allows legal departments and professional services firms to automate management of subsidiaries and legal entities. Used primarily by paralegals, the software centralizes director, officer, shareholder, tax and other entity data to create a single source of truth.
CEO Adrian Camara, one of Athennian’s five founders, told me that Athennian is the first true cloud platform for enterprise legal entity management, in a market dominated by two legacy products, Diligent and hCue by CT Corporation (which is owned by Wolters Kluwer).
Athennian’s software also provides integrated document generation, e-signatures, e-filing and project management to automate related tasks such as entity formation, appointments, transactions, and annual compliance.
The Series A investment announced today was led by Arthur Ventures, whose general partner, Patrick Meenan, joins Athennian’s board. The firm was started by the founders of Great Plains Software, which Microsoft acquired in 2001 and later renamed Microsoft Dynamics. The firm specializes in investing in so-called frontier companies outside Silicon Valley.
The funds will be used to accelerate product growth and invest in scaling Athennian’s cloud infrastructure to support its growing global customer base, Camara said. With most of the company’s current customers in the United States and Canada, the funds will also be used to drive expansion through Europe and the Asia-Pacific region.
“The legal entity management market has very high barriers to entry that protected on-premise incumbents operating like monopolies for decades,” Camara said. “Athennian brings the first, true enterprise cloud platform with consumer-grade user experiences into the category.”
Camara, a lawyer who formerly practiced corporate law, started the company in 2017. After bringing its product quietly to the market a year ago, the company has seen its revenue quickly grow in the intervening months from zero to many millions, he said. He believes this is because customers are excited to see a modern product in a market that has been stagnant for so long.
Not only is Athennian the first true cloud provider in the category, Camara said, but it is also the first to bring true workflow automation. Entity management “may be the largest source of structured data in all of legal,” he said. Access to that data allows Athennian to automate the creation of any kind of corporate finance document without additional data entry.