Thursday, April 27, 2006

Sage Visma and Hg Capital

Few weeks ago, David Terrar and I got excited by the news of Sage eyeing Norwegian Visma, who we thought had a SaaS model. But now it emegered that Hg Capital may have beaten Sage in acquiring Visma. I see participation of private equity in accounts/ERP/EIPP as a positive step, given that ebdex is also seeking private equity funding.

It is worth analysing the portfolio of Hg Capital to understand the threat they pose to Sage, in putting a barrier to increasing Sage's dominance. Some of technology investments include:

  1. Addison Software - German Accountancy and business software software.
  2. Burns e-Commerce Solutions - competitor of ours, right in our neighbourhood. Do they know us, perhaps not yet!
  3. Checkpoint - another sort of competitor - now sold to Bottomline Technologies who competes with us in EIPP sector.
  4. IRIS Software - Accounting and business software - We need to establish partnership agreement with them

Visma might be the largest investment todate within the technology sector. What is the overall game plan? Sage does not have an EIPP product yet! They seem to be pushing Sage Transaction E-mail at present to address the gap. Does this mean Hg Capital is one step above Sage? Time will tell, who got the right strategy.



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