Wolters Kluwer recently released Clarion, a “due diligence and client advisement solution,” according to their January 24th product announcement. Wolters Kluwer’s news release promoted Clarion as a tool for corporate attorneys, with “the ability to surface vital information on a company’s revenue sources, partnerships, customers, and suppliers that would typically take hours of research.” Clarion definitely has utility for a wider audience than corporate attorneys though and could be helpful in firmwide competitive intelligence/business development efforts. It allows for searching by company/ticker symbol to get to a company dashboard or lets a user drill down by industry and pull company lists sorted by Revenue in Industry, Total Revenue, or Company Name.
The last couple On Firmer Ground posts focused on business development, and we highlighted a Private Law Librarians and Information Professionals’ resource guide discussing librarians’ role in business development and competitive intelligence. The resource guide listed a number of databases for company and industry research, so this seemed like a good time to take a closer look at Clarion, since it’s a product that can be added to that list.
We asked Wolters Kluwer a few questions about why they saw a need for the product, how it was developed, and what distinguishes this tool from others on the market.
Why did Wolters Kluwer decide to develop Clarion? Did you see a gap in the market, or did you just want to have more of a presence in the M&A/company research space and complement your other offerings?
“Our customer research and ongoing discussions with customers let us know that the inefficiency and complexity of due diligence was a major pain point where they needed tools to streamline the process and provide greater assurance of completeness. Clarion was created specifically for reducing the time required to complete early stages of Due Diligence and identifying relationships that are otherwise hard to find. This also fits with Wolters Kluwer’s strategy of offering workflow tools for corporate and securities transactions. “
More from their press release on development:
“Clarion was developed exclusively for legal practitioners – with unique, actionable data points and an intuitive point and click dashboard, we built this solution specifically to support their workflow,” said Dean Sonderegger, Vice President & General Manager, Legal Markets & Innovation. “Clarion supports an attorney’s most important work – by efficiently giving them greater control over research – to enhance their ability to provide strategic counsel.”
How long did you spend developing Clarion, and how did you test it during development?
“We began development in early 2016 and commenced prototyping versions of the product to practitioners in April 2016. After three rounds of prototypes, we conducted a soft launch to a select group of firms in Fall 2016 followed by a full launch in January 2017, just a year after development commenced.”
Why did you decide to use data from FactSet for this product?
“Factset was chosen as a data supplier for the quality and uniqueness of their business relationship and industry information. Working with attorney practitioners further informed the many uses for this data and helped us design an interface that presented information to optimize law firm uses.”
Who do you see as the primary users of this database? Are there other groups that may benefit from using it as well?
“Clarion is designed for attorneys and the groups that support them as they conduct due diligence around M&A, SEC disclosure, and Conflicts research, as well as general client advisement on legal and business strategy. Others in the law firm that benefit from Clarion are in Antitrust and Business Development.”
From press release:
“Clarion supports a wide range of client advisement activities, including: due diligence around mergers and acquisitions or SEC disclosure; identifying supply chain and revenue risks; vetting potential acquisitions and partnerships; identifying peer firms for document research; and strategic legal advisement.”
Are there any specific features of Clarion that make it stand out from other company research/due diligence databases?
“Clarion’s business relationships database is unique in that it includes Suppliers, Customers, Partnerships, and Competitors and relevance ranking and other tools that support legal due diligence workflows. In addition, Clarion’s deep description of a business’ revenue sources and global sales by county make it stand out in the market.”
Do you have any plans for further development of this product?
“We are actively investing in Clarion and continue to evolve it based on ongoing user feedback. A one-step company profile report will be released soon. We are also planning to provide more background information to describe the relationships that Clarion surfaces as well as more detailed company profile information in later releases in 2017.”
Screenshot of Company Dashboard:
Screenshot—selecting a company by industry: