In a discussion with TBR, SoftwareOne’s regional vice president & transformation leader, explained that the acquisition of Beniva would help SoftwareOne move more expansively into the ServiceNow space, but in a manner that plays to two of SoftwareOne’s strengths: value-added software reselling and ITAM services.
Building on ITAM strengths and adding ITOM capabilities
On May 17, SoftwareOne announced its acquisition of Calgary-based ServiceNow boutique consultancy Beniva Consulting Group. According to SoftwareOne, the 75-person firm generated more than 70% of its revenue from Canadian clients and the rest in the U.S. SoftwareOne informed TBR that while Beniva focused on ServiceNow engagements, the firm’s revenue came from equal parts IT Asset Management (ITAM) and IT Operations Management (ITOM).
In a discussion with TBR, Kevin Hooton, SoftwareOne’s regional vice president & transformation leader, explained that the acquisition would help SoftwareOne move more expansively into the ServiceNow space, but in a manner that plays to two of SoftwareOne’s strengths: value-added software reselling and ITAM services. Hooton added that Beniva’s consultants will help SoftwareOne in mapping clients’ IT application ecosystem and then providing a road map for a multi-year efficiency and cloud migration and application modernization. In addition to the ITAM space, where SoftwareOne has a well-established and growing practice, Beniva will open opportunities with clients around the CMDB and establishing trustworthy data. Furthermore, Beniva adds capabilities in event management in the growing operational technology space. Overall, Beniva a will complement and extend one of SoftwareOne’s core values to clients: take out IT redundancies and reduce IT costs while improving efficiency, speed, and time to transformation.
In addition to the ITAM space, where SoftwareOne has a well-established and growing practice, Beniva will create opportunities with clients around event management in the operations technology space. Overall, Beniva will complement and extend one of SoftwareOne’s core values to clients: take out IT redundancies and reduce IT costs while improving efficiency, speed and time to transformation.
TBR assessment: New buyers, comfortable sales motion and more to come
In TBR’s view, the Beniva acquisition says a few things about SoftwareOne and the broader IT services and software ecosystem. First, Beniva’s client relationships and 7-year-plus track record help SoftwareOne continue to attract a new set of buyers, moving beyond just software procurement. As TBR has discussed with SoftwareOne at length over the last year, the company’s growth will likely closely correlate with expanded footprints at existing clients, requiring SoftwareOne’s sellers to find new buyer personas. Beniva should help with this.
Second, given ServiceNow’s market penetration, SoftwareOne needs to be a significant ecosystem player for attracting ServiceNow opportunities. While SoftwareOne is unlikely to surpass KPMG or Deloitte in scale, it can gain market share around ServiceNow by applying an approach SoftwareOne’s salespeople know exceptionally well: asking prospective clients, “Are you really getting all you can from your software? Let’s find out.”
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One more thought on SoftwareOne: Beniva’s revenue per employee ratio is higher than SoftwareOne’s, indicating higher-value services and average deal sizes, potentially testing SoftwareOne’s ability to easily integrate Beniva. Successfully folding in Beniva and its services could help chart SoftwareOne’s road map: fewer services clients, but larger-value offerings with deeper expertise, creating a high profitability and growth business.
Third, acquisition season is back, especially for technology-specific talent, such as ServiceNow, SAP and Amazon Web Services (AWS) specialists. TBR’s research indicates the three cloud hyperscalers — AWS, Microsoft Azure and Google Cloud Platform — value trained and certified resources at their partners more than any other evaluation criterion.
TBR believes ServiceNow, Salesforce, SAP and similar technology vendors concur. Consultancies, global systems integrators (GSIs) and, increasingly, VARs will need to prove they have the skilled talent, scale and acquisitions to remain the fastest path to credibility and sales — or, in consulting speak, people and permission. SoftwareOne continues expanding on both, and this Beniva acquisition further extends its capabilities and brand.