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Q4 2023 CS Disco Inc Earnings Call

Participants

Aleksey Lakchakov; Head of IR; CS Disco, Inc

Scott Hill; CEO & Director; CS Disco Inc

Michael Lafair; EVP & CFO; CS Disco Inc

Rob Morelli; Analyst; Needham & Company, LLC

Tim Grieves; Analyst; Loop Capital Markets LLC

David Hynes; Analyst; Canaccord Genuity Corp.

Koji Ikeda; Analyst; BofA Securities

Luv Sodha; Analyst; Jefferies LLC

Presentation

Operator

Yes, ladies and gentlemen, thank you for standing by, and welcome to CS Disco's Fourth Quarter and Fiscal Year 2023 conference call. (Operator Instructions) I would now like to hand the conference over to your first speaker today, Head of Investor Relations, Aleksey Lakchakov. Please go ahead.

Aleksey Lakchakov

Good afternoon, and thank you for joining us on today's conference call to discuss the financial results for discuss fourth quarter and fiscal year 2023. With me on today's call are Scott Hill, Disco's Chief Executive Officer; and Michael Lafair, Disco's Chief Financial Officer. Today's call will include forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Safe Harbor provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, including but not limited to statements regarding our financial outlook and future performance, future capital expenditures, market opportunity, market position, product strategy and growth opportunities and developments in the legal technology industry. In addition to our prepared remarks. Our earnings press release, SEC filings and a replay of today's call can be found on our Investor Relations website at ir dot CS. cisco.com.
Forward-looking statements involve known and unknown risks and uncertainties that may cause our actual results, performance or achievements to be materially different from those expressed or implied by the forward-looking statements and forward-looking statements represent our management's belief and assumptions only as of the date made and information on factors that could affect the Company's financial results is included in its filings with the SEC from time to time, including the section titled Risk Factors in the Company's quarterly report on Form 10-Q for the quarter ended September 30, 2023, filed with the SEC on November 9, 2023, and the company's upcoming annual report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2023.
In addition, during today's call, we will discuss non-GAAP financial measures. These non-GAAP financial measures are in addition to and not a substitute for or superior to measures of financial performance prepared in accordance with GAAP and reconciliation between GAAP and non-GAAP financial measures and a discussion of the limitations of using non-GAAP measures versus their closest GAAP equivalents is available in our earnings release.
And with that, I'd like to turn the call over to Scott.

Scott Hill

Thanks, Aleksey. Good afternoon, everyone, and thank you for joining us. I would like to start with a few comments on a strong end to 2023. Before turning to our objectives for 2020. For fourth quarter, total revenue increased 10% versus last year to $35.7 million. Full year 2023. Total revenue was $138.1 million, up 2% from the prior year.
Software revenues, which include revenues from eDiscovery and other software product offerings, grew 5% to $29.3 million in the fourth quarter. For the full year, software revenue grew 3% to $112.3 million. We had 1,441 customers as of December 31, 2023, which is 9% more than a year ago. Importantly, we had nearly 300 customers that generated more than $100,000 in revenues in 2023, up 9% compared to 2022.
The number of customers who generated more than $1 million in revenue also expanded to 26 during 2023. And finally, we saw multiproduct attach rate improved to 15% at the end of 2023, up from 11% at the end of 2022. We have more customers spending more money and buying more of our products.
And we believe there is meaningful room for additional expansion in our existing customer base services revenues, which include revenues from disco, revue and professional services, were $6.5 million in the fourth quarter. Full year services revenue was $25.8 million, flat from the prior year. Q4 2023 adjusted EBITDA was negative $1 million. Fiscal year 2023 adjusted EBITDA was negative $25.9 million we ended the year with just under $160 million in cash on our balance sheet, 2023 was a year of change for Disco, but we're pleased with the return to growth we saw within our software business exiting the year.
As we turn to 2024, we are focused on continuing to reaccelerate our revenue growth, investing to enhance our software product offerings, including advancing our innovative facility capabilities and strengthening our operating framework to improve our efficiency and profitability. And importantly, under the strong leadership of our Chief Human Resources Officer, Karen Herc, as we are building a stronger cultural foundation that we believe will be critical to sustaining our success.
Let's start with continuing to reaccelerate revenue. We struggled with a number of distractions during 2023, but I'm proud of how the team executed and delivered a solid end of the year. And importantly, I'm very confident that we have the leadership and team in place focused and motivated to build on that momentum. Of particular note, we're fortunate that Andrew Papa has agreed to step in as our Senior Vice President of Global Sales.
Andrea brings over 30 years of experience in the legal industry across all segments. Having led sales teams for over 20 years at LexisNexis and over seven years at Ebix. He hit the ground at both breadth and has already improved and accelerated a number of our key initiatives. The great news is that we have always had a large addressable market, a growing customer base and industry-leading products.
I believe we are now developing and deploying the right sales approach to capture a greater portion of that significant opportunity entering 2024, we have taken a number of steps to improve our sales execution and drive our software dollar-based net retention back above 100% from 97% exiting 2023. We have bifurcated our customers into specific profiles and are developing sales motions that better reflect the nature of those distinct groups. We reorganized our sales team to reflect these groupings and their needs.
We've enhanced our sales plan committed to a more constructive channel partnership and refined our pricing strategy. We've also combined our services and customer success function under Melanie Antonie leadership as our Chief Customer Officer to reposition customers at the center of what we do. We believe these initiatives will improve our customer satisfaction and NPS scores and enable consistent revenue growth across both existing and new customers.
In support of these sales and customer initiatives, we are refining our investments in lead generation, marketing and brand awareness, and we are already seeing signs of progress since the launch of the lady J. campaign last year, we have seen organic searches for disco triple, and we have received over 10 million views and 32.8 million impressions across various platforms. A third-party survey of over 1,000 U.S. based Legal Professionals indicated that we are now the most cited eDiscovery technology platform among all of our competitors. It's very common for us to hear new leads.
And customers mentioned the latest J. campaign as they first begin their digital journey. We must now do a better job in 2024 of converting this increased awareness and the revenue growth. Our product and engineering teams are also doing a great job of supporting our sales efforts by continuing to enhance our industry leading eDiscovery offering at an unprecedented pace while also further developing our market-leading Cecilia AI capabilities and our innovative legal platforms, including case builder hold and requests with the Cecilia Q&A now generally available in the US, we were able to sign our first several customers. The customers were a combination of law firms and large corporate users.
And we are already hearing some great feedback. It was exciting to hear the founding partner of a leading Houston-based law firm explain to us the benefit they were receiving from Cecilia Emageon. They are using Cecilia on a very large database with over 1.4 million documents in a very tight deadline. They demonstrated their end client has to feel you could ultimately save them hundreds of working hours and help accelerate the speed and quality of the work.
At the same time this partner also told us how he himself is able to use Astellia to find answers to very specific questions with only a couple of quick well, his team finds it far easier to get started and execute reviews with affiliates. The early success we are seeing with affiliate isn't expected to be a large contributor to our 2024 revenue.
But it is certainly opening doors to new and existing customers and is laying the foundation for future growth by extending our lead in innovation in the legal industry. It also demonstrates why we believe it is imperative that we continue to invest to enhance our eDiscovery offering, including advancing our innovative superior capabilities during 2023, our product and engineering teams work together to release major AI innovations, including facility Q&A, which increases the efficacy and efficiency with which lawyers reviewed documents and Cecelia timelines and tagging, which enhance the way lawyers prepare cases.
Our product and engineering teams have also been hard at work on Sicilia auto review which is now in private testing and has the capability to significantly automate and improve the accuracy and quality of large tedious document reviews.
As we pivot to 2024, we expect the rate and pace of innovation to continue as we add additional skills to our facility AI platform, we announced the launch of facility deposition summaries at leave a week in January. This generative AI-driven solution enables legal professionals to automatically create deposition summaries, which have traditionally been a tedious and time-consuming tasks.
Our team is also working to integrate the primary law asset, which we licensed in late 2023 into Sicilia, which will marry facts with law on a single technology platform. For the first time, we anticipate launching primary law capabilities later this year. And while we're excited about civilian, the key to our success in 2024 remains our core e-discovery software and services.
During the fourth quarter, we continued to deliver key functionality that our customers need, including deeper integration capabilities between time lines and e-discovery, new capability to track user activity and last access user information production sharing, which allows lawyers to securely and easily send legal protections to a third party and planning permissions, which allows users to keep work confidential from document viewer such as expert witnesses.
In January, our team delivered the ability to source on a custom field, which is one of the most asked for enhancements on our roadmap. Our product and engineering teams are extremely talented and dedicated and I'm confident that 2024 will be another banner year in product development that will delight our customers, enable revenue growth and strengthen the foundation of our future success. We are investing in local and globalized talent to supplement capacity.
While we continue to build a comprehensive litigation platform, which we believe will truly transform the way legal work gets done, we believe we are positioned to return to meaningful growth with a much more precise focus on serving our customers. We will invest to solidify our technology footprint, enhance our core offerings and build our lead in product innovation.
We intend to do all of this while also vigilantly focusing on the strength of our balance sheet and cash generation. In order to do that, we must strengthen our operating framework to improve our efficiency and profitability by developing the processes, system and infrastructure necessary to scale efficiently and profitably.
One important initiative that we will continue is expanding our presence in India to enable additional future efficiencies. In 2023, we grew our employee headcount in India from zero to over 100 employees. We anticipate approximately 20% of our workforce will be based in India by the end of this year. We are also working to enhance our CRM processes and systems and rebuild our customer success and sales ops function. We will enhance our security and controls capabilities and develop an improved quote-to-cash process as well as enhancing other key back office processes and systems. These are critical initiatives that will enable our future ability to scale.
Finally, while the Board continues to evaluate a strong set of candidates to be disclosed next leader, I remain fully engaged the CEO, and I'm very excited about 2024. As I enter my six months in the role, I want to reiterate some of the things I mentioned on the last earnings call over three months ago. I remain convinced in the amazing talent, the industry leading products, sizable market opportunity and the strategic roadmap we have discussed. I now believe we have also made significant and necessary improvements to our culture and our go-to-market approach.
But something else became clear in the time that I've been in this role, we had stopped investing in our people. We cut key sales functions and field capacity to save money without having a cohesive go-to-market strategy. We reduced R&D capacity to the detriment of our product roadmap. We asked our G&A resources to work harder without addressing key system and process, get those actions pushed us closer to profitability, but not in a sustainable way.
As I said in my remarks, this afternoon, we are going to invest and correcting those missteps. We believe these investments, combined with reaccelerating revenue growth, will put us on a sustainable path to profitability during 2025 the opportunity is there now we have to execute. With that, I'll turn it over to Michael.

Michael Lafair

Thank you, Scott. In Q4 2023, total revenues were $35.7 million, up 10% year over year. Software revenues, which includes revenues from eDiscovery and other software product solutions, were $29.3 million, up 5% year over year services revenues, which include discount managed review and professional services, were $6.5 million, up 37% year over year. Full year 2023 revenues were $138.1 million, up 2% year over year. Software revenues were $112.3 million, up 3% from prior year.
Services revenues were $25.8 million, flat versus last year. Growth in our professional services was offset by a year-over-year decline in revenues from our review product offering, which resulted in flat performance. Total dollar-based net retention as of 2023 year end was 92%. And as Scott mentioned, software dollar-based net retention was 97%.
In discussing the remainder of the income statement. Please note that unless otherwise specified, all references to our gross margin, operating expenses and net loss are on a non-GAAP basis. Adjusted EBITDA is also a non-GAAP financial measure, our gross margin in Q4 was 76% and gross margin for fiscal year 2023 was 75%, in line with Q4 and fiscal year 2022. As we mentioned before, our gross margins fluctuate from period to period based on the nature of our customers' usage. For example, the amount and types of data ingested and managed on our platform.
Sales and marketing expense for Q4 was $13.0 million or 36% of revenue, compared to 52% of revenue in Q4 of the prior year. For fiscal year 2023, sales and marketing expense was $62.1 million or 45% of revenue compared to 51% of revenue for fiscal year 2022, a decrease of over $6.5 million year on year. The decrease was primarily driven by a decrease in sales and marketing personnel costs.
Research and development expense for Q4 was $8.7 million or 24% of revenue, compared to 41% of revenue in Q4 of the prior year. For fiscal year 2023, research and development expenses were $42.3 million or 31% of revenue compared to 38% of revenue in fiscal year 2022, a decrease of over $8.8 million year on year. This decrease was primarily driven by a reduction in research and development personnel and a decrease in per employee cost as a result of globalization efforts.
General and administrative expense in Q4 was $7.8 million or 22% of revenue compared to 20% of revenue in Q4 of the prior year. For fiscal year 2023, general and administrative expenses were $30.2 million or 22% of revenue, consistent with general and administrative expenses as a percent of revenue in fiscal year 2022, general and administrative expenses were just about flat year on year.
Operating loss in Q4 was $2.2 million, representing an operating margin of negative 6% compared to negative 37% in Q4 of the prior year. Operating loss for fiscal year 2023 was $30.5 million, representing a margin of negative 22% compared to negative 36% in 2022. Adjusted EBITDA was negative $1.0 million in Q4, representing an adjusted EBITDA margin of negative 3% compared to an adjusted EBITDA margin of negative 34% in Q4 of the prior year.
Adjusted EBITDA in fiscal year 2023 was negative $25.9 million, a margin of negative 19% compared to a margin of negative 33% in 2022. Net loss in Q4 was $0.3 million or negative 1% of revenue compared to a net loss of $10.8 million or negative 33% of revenue in Q4 of the prior year.
Net loss in fiscal year 2023 was $22.8 million or negative 17% of revenue compared to net loss of $47.0 million or negative 35% of revenue in 2022. Net loss per share for fiscal year 2023 was $0.38 per share compared to $0.80 per share for fiscal year 2022.
Turning to the balance sheet and cash flow statement. We ended Q4 with $159.6 million in cash and cash equivalents and no debt. Operating cash flow in fiscal year 2023 was negative $25.5 million compared to negative $46.0 million in fiscal year 2022.
Now turning to the outlook for Q1 2024, we are providing total revenue guidance in the range of 34.5 million to $36.5 million in software revenue guidance in the range of $29.5 million to $30.5 million. We expect adjusted EBITDA to be in the range of negative $8 million to negative $6 million for fiscal year 2024, we are providing total revenue guidance in the range of $143 million to $155 million in software revenue guidance in the range of $120 million to $127 million, we expect adjusted EBITDA to be in the range of negative $26 million to negative $19 million, reflecting the investments Scott previously discussed.
Now I'd like to turn the call over to the operator to open up the line for Q&A. Operator?

Question and Answer Session

Operator

(Operator Instructions)
Scott Berg, Needham & Company.

Rob Morelli

Hi, this is Rob McNally on for Scott Berg. Next to my question of you guys touched on January, you announced the departure of looping Neil's CRO. Can you just touch on how if at all, this has impacted your 2024 outlook and your go-to-market motion for the year? Thanks.

Scott Hill

Yes, Amit, Scott, thanks for the question. We were disappointed to have Lou depart, but I have to tell you that Andrea top of his who stepped in his place got onboard remarkably fast. I placed a phone call to her literally a week before our kickoff a couple of weeks before legal week, and you wouldn't know that she had just stepped into the role. I think the fact that she has been in our industry for 30 years, 20 years at LexisNexis and seven at Epic really gave her a lot of forward momentum as she stepped into the role.
And frankly, cheap picked up some of the good work that Luke had started with the broader sales team and has really helped us refine and enhance it. And so if I really don't feel like not only do I feel like we haven't lost the stat. I think we have a little bit more forward momentum as we move into the year.
Make no mistake, a lot of the things that we've talked about in the call are things that we are just starting to deploy. So we had a good fourth quarter, a nice way to end the year. You will see that our guidance is that we think we'll have a similarly good start to the year. But those things are really driven by the initiatives that we're launching and deploying right now.
But I have the utmost confidence in Andrea and her leadership team and our team out in the field and inside sales across the board go and do the things that are necessary to deliver revenue in the range that we provided for the year.

Rob Morelli

Got it. That's helpful. And then regarding Cecilia, great to hear some of the positive feedback to date or any update on the monetization strategy there. And when it comes to the guide is there any sort of uplift or incremental adds there baked in?

Scott Hill

Yes. You know, as I mentioned in my prepared remarks, that there's not a significant dependency on facility revenue in 2024 per se. But as I noted, she is definitely opening doors to not only existing customers who are looking at ways to extend their partnership with us, but also customers that maybe we've had before and are now open to coming back new customers with whom we haven't spoken before.
And so the impact on 2024, I think is once again demonstrating what disco started with, which is the leading innovator in this space. And so customers want to talk to us about what we're doing and why we're in the room. Of course, we can talk to them about buying our eDiscovery platform. In the next case, we can talk to them about deploying case builder.
Across the case, we can talk to them about our hold and our request offering. So that's really the impact of facilities having now, as I said, we do have some customers that are using Cecilia right now on cases and who are paying us for that.
And so I'm excited that that process has begun, but there are a number of different ways yo, Cecilia, they think of her as attainable, but it's really the skills that matter you think about time lines, which are released and live and a part of our case builder Q&A, which is being used by paying customers today, but you've also got auto reviews or tagging coming down the line, which will, I think, greatly enhance our customer's doing review. You've got the deposition summaries that we have Tom announced it legal, but that's not even fully launched to our customers yet.
That should be launched in the near future. So a number of different skills that enhance existing products, enhanced existing workflows and I think provide a number of different opportunities for us to package bundle and price in a way that our customers will find really attractive. And so contribution this year is door opening. The contribution as we move into 25 and 26 is even more revenue growth opportunity because, frankly, we need that acceleration to continue to make the investments to innovate for our customers.

Rob Morelli

Got it. That's helpful. Congratulations, quarter.

Operator

Mark Schappel with Loop Capital.

Tim Grieves

Hi, this is Tim Grieves zone for Mark one for me. With respect to your overall demand environment, could you provide an update on whether you're seeing any changes with your customers like over the past 90 days in terms of buying patterns and sales cycles or any like additional sign also on deals close, I wouldn't say that I've noticed any notable differences.

Scott Hill

As I mentioned, we had a good end of the year. We've had a good start to a really good January and moving into February. I think a good start to the quarter. So I know I don't know any particular change in terms of buying patterns. But again, what I am noticing and I just spent I guess it's now been two or three weeks ago, a little bit of time for the first time at it legal week that our booth was buzzing. And again, I think it goes back to some of the innovative offerings that we're talking about. And so what I'm seeing is an additional engagement or reengagement across existing and new customers that I'm excited about. Again, that aren't necessarily yielding right into January and February, but I think certainly will allow us to accelerate as we move through the year.

Tim Grieves

Okay, thanks.

Operator

David Hynes, Canaccord Genuity.

David Hynes

Scott, maybe I need to ask about customer adds, right? I mean they're negative in Q4. We added 10 customers in the back half of the year. Just what's going on there and it seems to be a market slowdown from what we saw in the first half of the year. And I guess it begs the broader question of like what's the best leading indicator that we should be paying attention to for the health of the business?

Scott Hill

Yes, I think that's a really good question. And it's an important one because I think historically, we've talked about customers as if they're all equal an equal opportunity, equal future ability to grow equal interest in partnering. And that's not what I've seen in the six months that I've been here I think there are certainly customers where we have deep long-standing relationships, but they're also customers who through a small case by a small deal and then aren't with us two months later.
And so I've really asked the team to focus a lot inside that 1,441 customers on who are the ones that we can grow with, who are the ones that will partner with us, who are the ones that are that look to us for the second case, in the fourth case in the six K because historically, what we know is if we can get a customer to a fifth or a six case, that's a sticky customer.
And so I've asked the team to look at the customers from a lens of who are the customers we can grow to six cases, it doesn't immediately go one to six, but who's the one we can sell a second two. And if that second one comes, can it lead to a third?
And can that put us on a path to a six? So what that's going to mean is from quarter to quarter I don't know that you'd look at the customer count is particularly meaningful, but it does matter year over year because we do need to grow customers. And so I take solace in the fact that we're entering 2024 with 9% more customers than we had in the prior year. We're entering the year with 9% more customers spending more than 100,000.
We're entering the year with 26 customers, which is up of 10 or 12% from last year of the three. It's up because they're but they're spending 1 million or more a year. That's the growth driver for us.
And the thing it does is it makes us a little bit less transaction because to the extent that we can embed ourselves in a customer and grow with that customer. It becomes far more annuity-like. It's still transaction in nature, but the relationship becomes more annuity because there's a point in time at which we get the call on the next case, it's not a hard sell to win that case.
And so over the course of the year, growing our customer base absolutely important in is that out in any particular quarter, particularly and this is really important as we're for the first time ever as a company segmenting our customers and looking at bigger or the same for mid-market law, distinct from corporate law and developing sales motions around that, deploying our sales team across that aligning our marketing spend.
With that, there's going to be some dynamics underneath the covers within that customer count. And so what I would encourage you to do is watch the year over year growth for the full year. You asked about the trends as we move through the year.
But no, that what I think really important is the fact that we've segmented the customers we're developing, the sales motion were aligning system that's every bit of spend around customer to serve that. I think those are the more meaningful metrics. And then at the end of the day, that the metric to watch is how is revenue trending?

David Hynes

Yes, yes. Okay. Fair enough. Michael, one for you. Do you have software revenue for 21 and 22? I mean, would be helpful to see how that's been trending as a percent of revenue, given it looks like it's going to be a new guidance metric?

Michael Lafair

Yeah, so we the K includes software revenue for '22 for '23. And I'll just tell you what it is on the call out, it's about $112 million, and that is that is in the K and you also have indicated the quarterly numbers for '23,

David Hynes

But nothing historically past beyond that.

Michael Lafair

Nothing prior to '23.

David Hynes

Okay, got it. Thank you, guys.

Operator

(Operator Instructions)
Koji Ikeda, Bank of America.

Koji Ikeda

Hey, Scott. Hey, Michael. Thanks for taking the questions on So just a couple from me here. I think I heard that the firm, I guess it's safe to assume that the third quarter 2024 EBITDA profitability inflection target is now off the table on, but I think you did mention something about 2025. So would that be EBITDA profitable for the full year 2025? Or is that a quarter in 2025 that would show that positive inflection?

Scott Hill

Yeah this is Scott, got to be a question and not an unexpected one. What I said precisely in my remarks is that it will put us on a sustainable. And that's an important word to me a sustainable path to profitability as we move through 2025. So I didn't pick a quarter. I didn't pick the year. What I'm telling you is that I believe a combination of the investments we're making this year, the acceleration in revenue we're seeing this year and then an additional acceleration as we move out into '25 and beyond are the things that put us on track for a sustainable path to profitability during 2025.
Again, I'm not going to pick the mark, but it I mean, again, just in case I need to say it on the record we have to get to profitability. We're committed to get there. I just as I said, did not want to cut off our ability to grow revenues and to balance the path to profitability. And that's what we're doing. So as we move into 2025. I think the investments we're making this year combined with accelerating revenue growth, will put us on a sustainable path as we move through the year next year.

Koji Ikeda

Got it. No, that is super helpful, Tom. And looking at the guidance, it assumes services revenue, which is Discovery review, is roughly flat for 2024. So I guess maybe walk us through why it would be flat? And is this services revenue going to be a drag on the business going forward? And then the second part of that question is how is the review price? Because I was looking through prior transcripts and it sounded like it was it's priced on how many documents are interested in the platform. So just wondering why it was being put into a different category going forward.

Scott Hill

Yes. So it's a good question. So I think the way to think about it is within services, you have what I'll call kind of the get you up and running in our eDiscovery platform services. And then you have our review services, which leverage our technology, the attach rate of our gets you up and running services. Professional services is what we call things like ingest and forensic.
Those things tend to have a pretty consistent attach rate on our software revenue and so I say that and you could barely imply that what that means is underneath the covenant. The covers revenue is growing in services and down a little bit in review and that's that's an accurate directional conclusion for you to reach.
The important thing, though, is it's not because the review is going to be a I think you used the word a drag on the business overall, but review has tended historically to be more episodic and it tended to correlate much more significantly with larger deals while our services correlate with our software revenue, it that matter. Small deal, big deal, the attach rate is more consistent.
One of the reasons we broke out the two numbers is we wanted to give our investors a lot more clarity around the underlying strength of the thing that is key to our business, which is the software, but we will absolutely continue to offer our review services to clients who want that, again tends to be on the larger deal. I think a really important point, though, a lot of the costs associated with our review business are variable.
There's very little fixed cost to our business from that. And so we love the big reviews when they come. We fundamentally believe that we can do them more efficiently, leveraging our software we think it's an important offering into a very large addressable market. But again, it's right now the attach rate relates more to the larger deals as we move up the stack as we develop our sales motion around large laws or big law as we develop our sales motion around corporate, I believe our ability to win those larger deals will improve and as it does.
I think the review attach rate will start to look a little more consistent like our professional services. And but as of now, we effectively didn't want to lean into the year on whether that would or wouldn't happen quickly. But again, a key point for you to understand not a lot of fixing and I mean, like $1 million to $2 million bucks of fixed fees around that business. So not a lot of fixed cost to continue to provide that service where our customers want.

Koji Ikeda

Thank you, Scott. Thank you for taking the questions.

Operator

Brent Thill, Jefferies.

Luv Sodha

Thank you, Scott and Michael, for taking my questions. This is Luv Sodha on for Brent Thill. I wanted to ask one. So obviously, you know, dollar retention has declined quite a bit to 92% versus 106% last year. I guess you know, what are the key vectors to drive that back to above 100%? And could you maybe break that down between, say the volume of cases versus driving up multiproduct adoption Yes.

Michael Lafair

Look, I think for me, the fact that we're coming off a 97% software year is the lowest hanging fruit we've done historically. Ibnr has been 115, 120% in the software business in order to hit the guide, we've got to push that back to call it 103% to 105% this year, which is at the goal. The goal is to get back where we've been historically where we know we can be.
And so it just got to be a modest push. And the way that's going to happen, it's a far greater focus on our existing customer base. And that's why I say the inside that [1,400, 41]. It's not one large, everybody's the same kind of customer. There are a lot of big, large customers and their corporates in there. There are mid-market firms in there and I think our ability to go and find the right motion in those segments is critically important.
And another I think really important thing is we went from having a really strong customer success function a couple of years ago to having no customer success function and mentally Anton and our team just in the two of them are working well together, have already reestablish that team. And so as I talk about the alignment of go to market in the field in marketing, sales ops was a big part and an important part of that team is the customer success function, the client experience.
And so we've got to get back to understanding who our customers are what their needs are and looking, as you said, for the operative, what's the next product they could buy from us what the next case where we should have the opportunities? Can they leverage? This is Steleus skills that are in market, do they need case builder to sit across all of their cases or one case? In particular, the client success rep that we have talking to those customers every week, I think will be critical to that success.
And so for me, the fact that we moved from one 115 to 120 down to 97 is we frankly, took our eye off the ball and the ability to push it back above 100 and back towards historical levels is basic blocking and tackling. And I feel like we've taken the right steps again, I caution that we've just rebuilt that function over the last couple of months, and we're aligning now around our segmentation. But I fundamentally believe as we move through the year that alignment and that function in particular, are going to be critical to our ability to really rebuild the or refresh that D and on them.

Luv Sodha

Got it. I appreciate that. Just a quick follow-up on on the investments that you're planning to make cost. Scott, I guess, how what which parts of the business are getting this investment? Because obviously you're getting some efficiency from the additional investments in India. So where are these investments going? And how will you track the efficiency of these investments?

Scott Hill

Yeah, so it really it's multifaceted. As I said, in my remarks. The first thing, the first investment we made was in our people last year was a difficult year for disco in any number of ways, but it was a year in which once again, most of our people were simply asked to work harder with little to no reward.
And so as we moved into this year for the first time in two years, we had a consistent salary increase program. It doesn't really impact our EBITDA numbers, but we also had an equity program that gave everyone in our company equity, which I think is the greatest thing in the world to align our employees' interests around the what's best for the company. So that's the first and key thing for me is investing in our people. The second thing is, as I mentioned, we're rebuilding our client success team.
We're rebuilding literally from zero our sales ops team were adding about 20% capacity in the field going from, I think, around 30 reps to just under 40, which will allow us to cover more customers as we segment, particularly around corporate and big law. We're making investments in R&D because the flat reality is that most of what R&D is doing today is what will allow us to grow tomorrow. It's not about 2024. It's about deposition, somebody that's about the enhancement in our eDiscovery platform.
It's about the enhancements in case builder and in a world where you cut that because it doesn't line up with the current your revenue, you're effectively cutting your nose off to spite your face. And so it's investments in R&D that are that are in the future. And then, Michael, I know this is near and dear to his heart. As you clients scale a business, you can't depends simply on people working harder.
You have to have systems you have to have processes you have to have control, you have to have security and we must make the investments that are necessary to do that. The good news is the level of spend increased this year versus last year? Is it something you need to go model? And as we move forward, I think what we're doing is recovering from a little bit of an overcorrection last year getting back to balance this year. And then we'll be able to support double digit revenue growth with low single digit expense growth and put ourselves on that sustainable path to profitability.
By doing that. So it really is investments across the board. But all of those are in line with what I said in the script, which is finding our way towards sustainable double-digit revenue growth, modest forward-looking investment and our ability to get our business to profitable and positive cash flow. And by the way, the last thing I'll say on that, the way I look at it is if you take our guidance that roughly speaking, that's about 15% of the cash that we had on the balance sheet at the end of the year, which if we left it sitting in the bank, would earn about 4%. I think the return on the investment we're making will be significantly greater than that.

Luv Sodha

Got it. Thank you so much for the color.

Operator

There are no further questions at this time. I will now turn it back over to CEO, Scott Hill for closing remarks.

Scott Hill

Thank you, Brianna We appreciate everyone joining us today. 2023, as I just said, was a challenging year for Discover. I want to thank our employees for their resilience and our customers for their forbearance. We're excited about the opportunities we see in 2024.
There will be bumps on the road, but our team is aligned and focused. We're committed to returning to consistent double digit growth, committed to disciplined capital and expense management, leading to sustainable profitability. We're committed to our customers and to each other, and I have to tell you, I'm excited and proud to be a part of it as we begin the next chapter for disco. And we look forward to updating you on the progress as we move into our next quarters, and I wish you all a nice evening.

Operator

This concludes today's conference call. Thank you for your participation. You may now disconnect.

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