Document Direct secures £400k funding for growth

Document Direct, a Liverpool company providing a digital dictation and transcription service for law firms and medical and health centres, has secured a £400,000 investment from The North West Fund for Venture Capital, managed by Enterprise Ventures.

Document Direct is one of the UK’s leading suppliers of transcription, typing and secretarial services, producing over 20,000 completed documents per month from voice recordings sent over the internet.

The company, which is based in Old Hall Street, provides a 100% UK-based 24/7 service for legal and professional services firms and the medical sector. It will use the funding to pursue its expansion plans.

Document Direct was established in 2005 by managing director, entrepreneur Martyn Best. A year later he co-founded the Liverpool PR agency Paver Smith, now renamed Influential, where he played an active role until 2013 before leaving to focus on Document Direct.

Since then, sales have almost doubled at Document Direct and the company now has over 100 clients with around 2,000 registered users of the service. Document Direct uses secure encrypted transmission of digital sound files and offers very fast turnaround times, which significantly improves its clients’ efficiency, delivering up to 60 per cent savings on their typing and secretarial costs.

Document Direct has also developed its own software platform, iComply Direct, which uses an innovative e-signature to help law firms better manage their anti-money laundering obligations and streamline the process of obtaining client verification on documents.

The investment by The North West Fund for Venture Capital is financed by the European Regional Development Fund and the European Investment Bank, and follows its recent investment in Liverpool-based Datalaw, which provides online training services for law firms.

Lisa Ward of Enterprise Ventures said the deals reflected the innovation taking place within the legal sector, with service providers using new technology to help law firms improve efficiency.  She said:

“Document Direct spotted the potential for professional services firms to outsource document production at an early stage, and it is now an established force in the market,” she said. “As more firms look to outsource such services, there are plenty of growth opportunities for the business. This investment will help to fund its expansion.”

 Martyn Best added:

“The growth of Document Direct until now has been funded by myself and some very supportive shareholders, and the addition of this investment will enable our service infrastructure to be enhanced, and our business development and client service team to be significantly strengthened.

“We are finding a growing awareness of our offering by many law firms and medical and health centres who recognise the need to move away from traditional means of delivering elements of their service. The need for cost savings and efficiency, combined with the emergence of safe, secure and reliable technologies and services such as ours provides the assurance that our clients seek.”

Document Direct has also expanded its board with the appointment of Chris Bull, the former CEO of Top 30 law firm Osborne Clarke, and former Chief Operating Officer of the global outsourcing giant Integreon.

Brabners LLP advised Enterprise Ventures on the transaction.  Hill Dickinson LLP advised Document Direct.


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