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Startup Atrium was meant to disrupt the legal profession - now it's laying off lawyers

1 month ago by Jon Marino in Consumer, Retail

This probably isn't what they had in mind when they decided to 'disrupt' lawyers. 

Axios' Kia Kokalitcheva reports Atrium, the legal services startup, is "laying off most of its lawyers and paralegals." Just a few years into its founding - and backed with big bucks from investors like Andreessen Horowitz, General Catalyst and Y Combinator -  Kokalitcheva reports Atrium is moving away from providing lawyers as a part of its business model, and instead wants to better dedicate itself to things like creating software that is used by legal professionals. 

The pivot to software looks like it will crimp growth at Atrium in the short-term, judging by alternative data derived from job postings. It looks as if Atrium's decision to refocus its strategy came around the beginning of January - that's when job postings fell from a high of 35 to just 15 at most recent tally, making for a 57% decline in a very short period of time.

It's also apparent in Atrium's LinkedIn ($NASDAQ:MSFT) Employee Count - right around the same time that Atrium began reducing job postings to prepare for the new realities it faced in the New Year, is when headcount at the company began to fall as well. LinkedIn Employee Headcount dropped more than 7% - and this figure could continue to fall as other staffers change their profile status post-departure. 

How do we know it's not dire yet? Whenever a startup is truly facing hard times, it tends to slash hiring and headcount by a lot more. And it seems as if Atrium's software still has a viable space in which to operate. We've chronicled some startups that faced far more dire outlooks - here's hoping the next time Thinknum Media checks in on Atrium, it looks a little bit more like one of these companies. 

About the Data: 

Thinknum tracks companies using the information they post online - jobs, social and web traffic, product sales and app ratings - and creates data sets that measure factors like hiring, revenue and foot traffic. Data sets may not be fully comprehensive (they only account for what is available on the web), but they can be used to gauge performance factors like staffing and sales. 

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Jon Marino

Jon Marino is Thinknum's finance editor, covering the impacts of alternative data on public companies and investors. Prior to joining Thinknum, Jon worked in the ...

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