Tracking new and emerging tech companies in and around Philly has become more interesting and challenging in recent years as the startup ecosystem has blossomed. It’s deeper and more diverse than I can recall. The scene has mushroomed in the past two or three years, though much of the foundation was laid before then. The Philly healthcare sector has provided a particular boost, in terms of both new medicines and information technology.
The PACT Enterprise Awards has a good track record for spotting the best in midstream as they grow.
New Hope-based Meet Group’s (NASDAQ: MEET) shares rose by as much as 21% in New York trading Thursday, and closed Friday at $6.05, for a market cap of $464 million. Match, which is being spun off by IAC/InterActiveCorp, was up 12% at one point on the news yesterday. Its market cap is near $23 billion.
Meet was founded as MyYearbook in 2005 by then high school student Catherine Cook and her brothers, Dave and current CEO Geoff Cook . First Round Capital was an early investor. Meet Group has been smart in positioning itself as a steaming site for people to interact, making good niche acquisitions, and meeting most goals it sets for itself. Geoff Cook, who sold a startup to Thomson while still in college, is very capable. But its relatively small size in the market might raise questions about its future viability as a stand alone company.
Facebook entered the market last Fall with a new app, Facebook Dating..
The German broadcasster ProSiebenSat.1 Media SE was reported to be interested in acquiring Meet Group by Reuters in December.
SAIC to Acquire Unisys Federal in Accretive, Strategic and Value Creating Transaction (Press Release)
Creates a leading digital transformation provider to the U.S. government.
Accretive to key financial metrics including organic revenue growth, earnings, and cash.
Adds intellectual property, technology-enabled solutions, and expands customer reach.
$1.2 billion transaction, including tax assets.
February 06, 2020 06:36 AM Eastern Standard Time
RESTON, Va.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Science Applications International Corp. (NYSE: SAIC), a premier technology integrator, today announced that it has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire Unisys Federal, in an all-cash transaction valued at $1.2 billion ($1.025 billion net of the present value of tax assets of approximately $175 million), in a highly strategic and value creating transaction. This represents a transaction multiple of approximately 10.5x CY2020 adjusted EBITDA, adjusted for the net present value of tax assets.
“With the addition of Unisys Federal, SAIC will be a leading provider of digitial transformation services and solutions to the federal government. This exciting opportunity advances our strategy by building on our modernization capabilities, increasing customer access, accelerating growth and enhancing shareholder value”Tweet this
Unisys Federal, an operating unit of Unisys (NYSE: UIS), is a leading provider of infrastructure modernization, cloud migration, managed services, and enterprise IT-as-a-service through scalable and repeatable solutions to U.S. federal civilian agencies and the Department of Defense.
“With the addition of Unisys Federal, SAIC will be a leading provider of digitial transformation services and solutions to the federal government. This exciting opportunity advances our strategy by building on our modernization capabilities, increasing customer access, accelerating growth and enhancing shareholder value,” said SAIC CEO Nazzic Keene. “The financial benefits of acquiring Unisys Federal are compelling, including accretion of adjusted EBITDA margins, non-GAAP earnings per share, and cash generation.”
The transaction will further differentiate SAIC in the government services market by deploying technology-enabled, intellectual property-based solutions through a commercial–like service delivery model. The acquisition will further enhance shareholder value through a highly attractive financial profile, enabled through greater customer access and differentiated solutions in areas of higher growth profiles.
Strategic and Financial Benefits
Enhances capabilities in government priority areas, including IT modernization, cloud migration, managed services, and development, security, and operations (DevSecOpps)
Expands portfolio of intellectual property (IP) and technology-driven offerings, that enable government-tailored, commercial-based solutions
Increases access to current and new customers with a strong pipeline of new business opportunities
Highly accretive across all key financial metrics
SAIC expects to fund the $1.2 billion cash transaction through a combination of cash on hand and incremental debt. The transaction is expected to close by the end of SAIC’s first quarter of fiscal year 2021, ending May 1, 2020, following customary closing conditions, including HSR regulatory clearance. The transaction has been unanimously approved by SAIC’s Board of Directors. The businesses will continue to operate independently until the transaction closes.
Guggenheim Securities, LLC acted as lead financial advisor and Citigroup Global Markets, Inc. acted as co-financial advisor to SAIC. King & Spalding LLP served as legal counsel to SAIC. Avascent provided business due diligence and strategy support services.
Conference Call and Webcast Information
SAIC management will hold a conference call at 7:30 a.m. eastern time on February 6, 2020 to discuss the transaction. The conference call will be webcast simultaneously to the public through a link on the Investor Relations section of SAIC’s website (http://investors.saic.com).
After the call concludes, an audio replay can be accessed on SAIC’s Investor Relations website.
Certain statements in this written communication contain or are based on “forward-looking” information within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. In some cases, you can identify forward-looking statements by words such as “may,” “will,” “should,” “expects,” “projects,” “intends,” “plans,” “anticipates,” “believes,” “estimates,” “predicts,” “potential,” “continue,” “outlook,” and similar words or phrases or the negative of these words or phrases. Forward-looking statements in this written communication include, among others, statements regarding the expected timing and benefits of the proposed transaction, including anticipated expansion of our capabilities and customer access, future financial performance, and expected accretion. These statements reflect our belief and assumptions as to future events that may not prove to be accurate. Actual performance and results may differ materially from the forward-looking statements made in this written communication depending on a variety of factors, including: the possibility that the transaction will not close or that the closing may be delayed; the failure of either party to obtain the necessary approvals as required for the transaction or that the other conditions to the closing of the transaction may not be satisfied; the occurrence of any event, change or other circumstances that could give rise to the termination of the transaction agreement; our ability to realize the anticipated benefits of the transaction; developments in the U.S. government defense and intelligence community budgets, including budget reductions, implementation of spending cuts (sequestration) or changes in budgetary priorities; delays in the U.S. government budget process or approval to raise the U.S. debt ceiling; delays in the U.S. government contract procurement process or the award of contracts; delays or loss of contracts as result of competitor protests; changes in U.S. government procurement rules, regulations and practices; our compliance with various U.S. government and other government procurement rules and regulations; governmental reviews, audits and investigations of our company; our ability to effectively compete and win contracts with the U.S. government and other customers; our ability to attract, train and retain skilled employees, including our management team, and to retain and obtain security clearances for our employees; our ability to accurately estimate costs associated with our firm-fixed-price and other contracts; cybersecurity, data security or other security threats, systems failures or other disruptions of our business; resolution of legal and other disputes with our customers and others or legal or regulatory compliance issues, including in relation to the transaction; our ability to effectively deploy capital and make investments in our business; our ability to maintain relationships with prime contractors, subcontractors and joint venture partners; our ability to manage performance and other risks related to customer contracts; the adequacy of our insurance programs designed to protect us from significant product or other liability claims; our ability to declare future dividends based on our earnings, financial condition, capital requirements and other factors, including compliance with applicable laws and contractual agreements; our ability to obtain or maintain trade secret protection; and our ability to execute our business plan and long-term management initiatives effectively and to overcome these and other known and unknown risks that we face. These are only some of the factors that may affect the forward-looking statements contained in this written communication. You should be aware that new factors may emerge from time to time and it is not possible for us to identify all such factors, nor can we predict the impact of each such factor on the proposed transaction. For further information concerning risks and uncertainties associated with our business, please refer to our filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including our annual report on Form 10-K for the fiscal year ended February 1, 2019 and any subsequent quarterly reports on Form 10-Q and current reports on Form 8-K.
All information in this written communication is as of the date hereof. Unless legally required, we expressly disclaim any duty to update any forward-looking statement provided in this written communication to reflect subsequent events, actual results or changes in our expectations. We also disclaim any duty to comment upon or correct information that may be contained in reports published by investment analysts or others.
The first Trenton Computer Festival was held on May 2, 1976 at Trenton State College (now the College of New Jersey) in Ewing NJ, outside of Trenton. It was started by Sol Libes of the Amateur Computer Group of New Jersey and Allen Katz of The College of New Jersey. It later moved to Mercer County Community College as it grew larger, and in 1999 moved to the NJ Convention Center in Edison, NJ, It returned to the College of New Jersey in 2005.
In the days before the Internet and the presence of most computer retail outlets, user groups and other channels of information, TCF played a particularly important role as a source of learning and knowledge dissemination for the East Coast in the fledgeling microcomputer industry.
TCF has had a notable and varied list of keynote speakers throughout its history, including Bill Gates, Dr. Adam Osborne, Mr. and Mrs. John W. Mauchly (of ENIAC fame), Eric Raymond, Dr. Ken Iverson, and Gordon E. Eubanks.
In the past a weekend-long event, recently it has been a one-day event held on a Saturday in March.
Numbers are important to OwnBackup. The company currently houses 80 employees at its headquarters, in Englewood Cliffs (possibly 200 by year’s end), and 150 worldwide.
“We have a large presence still in Tel Aviv, we have an office in London and we have 10 to 15 people scattered across the United States working remotely,” said Sam Gutmann, CEO.
In August, OwnBackup was ranked #102 on the Inc. 5000 list for 2019, and it came in at #2 when NJTechWeekly.com compiled a list of fast-growing NJ tech companies from the Inc.article,
However, as significant as these numbers are — and from Gutmann’s reaction, you know they’re extremely important — what OwnBackup is doing for its steadily increasing clientele is at the forefront of the CEO’s mind.
“We consider it backup 3.0”
Sam Gutmann, CEO of OwnBackup
“We consider it backup 3.0,” said Gutmann. “Cloud to cloud, moving data from one cloud to another. Right now, we focus on the Salesforce ecosystem, the fourth-largest enterprise software company in the world: 180,000 customers.”
How it works
He explained the process. “We generally back up customers that use Salesforce or other applications built on the Force.com platform. When a customer deploys our tool — frankly, it’s a 15-minute set-up process — we almost immediately start backing up all the data they have on the platform. Then what happens, in the event of a data loss, the first thing you need to do is understand what happened. Salesforce or anything built on the cloud now is a giant, relational database. So if you delete 100 accounts, for example, you’re just not affecting those 100 accounts; the contacts, the opportunities and the leads would also be affected. We call this ‘cascade delete.’ Our series of comparison tools allows you to compare any two points in time. And we understand what data records were added, changed or deleted. Once you understand the extent of that data loss, we have tools that will allow you to start recovering the data.”
Recovery time for OwnBackup global clients depends on extent of the data corrupted. “We really want to provide the [100% Software-as-a-Service solution] tools, so you, the client, can understand what exactly was affected in a surgical way, and put the database back together, precisely the way you think it should be,” said Gutmann.
OwnBackup, minus its current name, was started as a part-time project in 2013 in Israel by Gutmann’s friend and colleague, current CTO Ariel Berkman. In mid-2014, Berkman landed a large enterprise customer in the United States, which encouraged the company to think more globally and changed the part-time project into a full-time venture. The latter involved bringing in a management team, and that’s when Gutmann got involved.
Born and raised in Bergen County, Gutmann lived in Manhattan for 10 years, but he’s now back in the New Jersey suburbs. “Frankly, [I] almost always worked in Jersey, even when I lived in the city. I did the reverse-commute.” Though only a stone’s throw from the George Washington Bridge and the business mecca that is Manhattan (and the rest of New York City), office space in his locale is a third as expensive, he said.
“We attract great talent right where we are,”
Sam Gutmann, CEO of OwnBackup
Gutmann and OwnBackup have just moved into a bigger space in Englewood Cliffs, and Gutmann noted that commuting daily to a New Jersey office is easier than crossing the Hudson. “We attract great talent right where we are,” he said, adding that there are two shuttles that transport Gotham residents to the company offices.
The search for talent
OwnBackup is on the lookout for talented folks. “If you’re amazing, and you want to join an amazing fun, fast-growth tech company, we are very, very much hiring,” said Gutmann. He explained that there are currently 39 open positions to fill, including those for account executives, sales development representatives and marketing specialists. “[Bergen County] is a great place. We are one of the fastest-growing tech companies in Bergen County, or perhaps the fastest-growing, and we want to continue to grow here. We look forward to continuing our involvement in the community and to continuing to build a great company.”
Gutmann also stressed that office camaraderie is crucial. “We are very proud of the team we’ve built. Culture is extremely important to us. The two most important things that I do is help hire and attract amazing people and help foster a culture where everyone is working together towards our mission and our vision, but having fun while we do it.”
The absolute number-one challenge? “Hiring amazing people. We have hired slowly and methodically, and there’s a lot of great people out there, but sometimes they take a little time to find. Our growth is certainly dependent on our ability to ramp up the team, and we’ve done a great job at it, but we’ve got a long way to go.”
Eddystone-based InsPro Technologies, which provides an enterprise software platform for companies in the life insurance & annuities business, agreed to be acquired by New Jersey-based Majesco ((NASDAQ: MJCO) last week for $12 million. InsPro had raised $35.4 million, the bulk of it from Radnor-based Cross Atlantic Capital Partners, a VC firm that hasn’t been active for some time. The late Pete Musser was said to be another investor.
Some people other than Cross Atlantic once thought InsPro (formerly Health Benefits Direct) had the potential to become more than it would. In fact, it had a complicated relationship with iPipeline, whose software was complementary to InsPro in some cases. Technically Philly reported that in 2009 there were acquisition discussions between the two companies as demonstrated by this SEC document.
iPipeline went on to be acquired for $1.6 billion a decade later.
My own impression from a distance was that InsPro’s solution was too complex and customized for its own capabilities (See my 2012 piece). But maybe it will get a better chance to sustain growth with a larger company.
For the first nine months of 2019, InsPro had revenue of $10.6 million vs. $16.6 million in 2018. Net loss was $1,611,651 in the nine months ended September 30, 2019 as compared to net income of $2,169,046 in prior year’s nine months. It reported having more than 50 employees as of last week.