Acumatica ramps up after private equity deal, using new owner’s cash for an acquisition of its own

Acumatica CEO Jon Roskill on stage at the Acumatica Summit in Las Vegas. (Acumatica Photo)

Business technology company Acumatica is taking advantage of a cash infusion from its new majority owner to make an acquisition of its own, part of a larger effort to outpace competitors such as Microsoft, SAP, and Oracle in the market for cloud-based enterprise resource planning software.

The Bellevue, Wash.-based company, which was acquired last year by private equity fund EQT Partners, has acquired its longtime partner JAAS Systems, a manufacturing software company based in Columbus, Ohio, where Acumatica also has an existing presence. Acumatica already sold the JAAS software as part of its Acumatica Manufacturing Edition, but it plans to leverage the JAAS acquisition as it double downs on its technology for the manufacturing sector.

Acumatica plans to double the number of people working on the manufacturing edition this year, and “really scale it up” in an effort to distance itself from competitors such as Oracle’s NetSuite and Microsoft Dynamics in the manufacturing vertical, said Jon Roskill, the Acumatica CEO, in an interview.

“Things were going fine the way they were, but we want to go even faster,” Roskill said. “We want to go further into these areas where we really are out in the lead.”

The JAAS Systems acquisition closed last week, shortly after it was announced on stage at the Acumatica Summit in Las Vegas, which was attended by 2,500 people at the Chelsea Theater at The Cosmopolitan hotel. Specific financial terms of the deal weren’t disclosed. Roskill characterized the purchase price as less than $50 million, and said it was paid using EQT Partners’ cash. The private equity firm, which went public in Sweden last year, has about $45 billion under management.

John Schlemmer, JAAS Systems chief operating officer, on stage with Roskill at the Acumatica Summit. (Acumatica Photo)

John Schlemmer, the JAAS chief operating officer, told Acumatica Summit attendees that the combination will give the JAAS team additional resources in support, development and engineering to “accelerate this much, much quicker than we have in the past.”

JAAS has 25 employees, all of whom are joining Acumatica as part of the acquisition, pushing the company to about 350 employees overall, Roskill said. That’s up from about 265 employees when the acquisition by EQT was announced last year.

In a separate announcement at the event, eWorkplace Manufacturing, a longtime SAP partner, said it’s building a version of its BatchMaster Process Manufacturing Software for Acumatica’s platform, which Roskill described as “a big win” for Acumatica, as well.

Acumatica made a series of additional announcements at the event last week, including an alliance with accounting and consulting giant BDO, and an expanded partnership with another Bellevue-based company, Smartsheet, through which the companies plan to to unify their project accounting and project management technologies.

EQT, which has an 82 percent stake in Acumatica, is infusing additional capital into the company beyond the JAAS acquisition, Roskill said. That’s enabling Acumatica to make additional hires and nearly triple the amount it’s spending on lead and demand generation to court new customers through marketing and other initiatives.

The private equity firm also owns Swedish enterprise software provider Industrial and Financial Systems AB, and the acquisition of Acumatica was designed in part to align the two companies over the long term.

Acumatica was founded in 2008 by John Howell, Mike Chtchelkonogov, and Serguei Beloussov, who also founded companies including Parallels and Acronis. Roskill, who previously led Microsoft’s worldwide partner organization, joined Acumatica as CEO in 2014.

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