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Valsoft enters MPS space with double acquisition

M&A activity within the MPS sector continues apace. The latest deal to be announced is Montreal-based Valsoft’s acquisition
of Italy-based MPS Monitor and Denmark-based Euroform A/S. The double acquisition marks Valsoft’s entry into the managed print services space, Nicola De Blasi will lead the new operation while maintaining his position as CEO of MPS Monitor, and taking on the role of CEO of Euroform

Valsoft specialises in building and acquiring vertical market software companies that provide mission- critical solutions in their respective industry or niche. The organisation added 14 software companies to its portfolio in 2021 – 11 in the UK and Europe, including its first company in Germany. Seven of the acquisitions were in new verticals – including three companies in a brand new workforce management vertical and seven in existing ones. By acquiring 100 per cent of both MPS Monitor and Euroform, Valsoft will enter the managed print services vertical and leverage the strong market positioning, product strength, and expertise of the two combined companies to provide an integrated SaaS offering to dealers and managed print providers across the world.

“We are very excited to enter the printing management vertical through our acquisition of both EuroForm and MPS Monitor,” said Michael Assi, CEO of Aspire Software, the operating division of Valsoft. “The talented teams, company values, and established position in the market of these great companies combined, will make this a platform acquisition poised for continued future growth and continuous product innovation for years to come.”

Buy, hold and create value

A key tenet of Valsoft’s philosophy is to invest in well-established businesses and foster an entrepreneurial environment that shapes a company into a leader in its respective industry.

Unlike private equity and VC firms, it does not have a pre-defined investment horizon and looks to buy, hold and create value through long-term partnerships with existing management and customers.

“Valsoft don’t buy to sell, they buy to keep and to grow. They operate in niche markets, find and acquire the best and growing companies in that niche, and then add others to the portfolio to add further value and build a market leader in that vertical niche market. That is what they have done consistently for the last six, seven years – across more than 20 different markets – from automotive, construction, broadcast and media entertainment, to document management, travel and leisure, and more,” De Blasi said.

IoT SaaS provider

In 12 years since its start, MPS Monitor has become one of the major IoT SaaS providers globally for the remote monitoring and management of printing devices and the provision of managed print services, currently serving more than 2,500 dealers and installed in more than 220,000 customers around the world.

MPS Monitor provides a comprehensive SaaS platform for monitoring and managing printers, available on the cloud, and equipped with a full set of APIs for integrating external software solutions. Its highly scalable and high-performing data collection technology allows dealers/ VARs, large end-users, manufacturers, and retailers of printer consumables to satisfy any need associated with the management of printing devices, recording of page volumes, and supply of toner in an automatic and controlled way. The MPS Monitor Cloud service is managed within an Information Security Management System which is certified as compliant with ISO/IEC 27001, SOC 2 Type 2 and CSA Star Level 2.

The company has grown to become a £3m turnover business and now as part of Valsoft, De Blasi is excited about leading the wider organisation and the massive potential for further growth.

“This is an extremely exciting moment in the history of MPS Monitor and Euroform, our customers and our combined team,” he explained. “We’re about to embark on a whole new chapter supported by the resources, experience, and global footprint of Valsoft. The timing coincides with growing market demand from dealers and MPS providers for secure, flexible, scalable and sustainable SaaS solutions that provide business intelligence and detailed insights, while also helping to drive down operational costs, and increase the overall security of their print environments. With the formation of a managed print services vertical, Valsoft has created a solutions powerhouse that’s ready and able to address the challenges of managed print customers and providers globally.”

He continued: “The most important thing for me is to make an impact on the industry. Over the past two to three years, at MPS Monitor we have tried to be innovative in our approach and to do something different in a sector which was stable, we strive to be the most integrated platform in the market,” he said.

Innovation, integration and security

“MPS Monitor’s focus is on three key areas – innovation, integration and security. This is what we do, and we dedicate ourselves totally to these things,” De Blasi added. Over the past couple of years, MPS Monitor has developed a new DCA, modern user interface for the platform and advanced business intelligence – MPS Monitor Analytics is a complete BI platform based on Microsoft PowerBI technology that provides granular and aggregate visibility to virtually all the data and events related to customers’ print environments.

The company has also forged partnerships with leading technology providers and integrated MPS Monitor with solutions including HP Smart Device Services (SDS); Microsoft Universal Print; Okta Identity, to enable users to sign on across domains with a single online identity, further increasing security; Asolvi, to add value by enabling dealers using Asolvi ERP solutions to benefit from a deep integration of the monitoring platform into their systems; and an integration with PaperCut that provides PaperCut customers with advanced BI and advanced features in MPS Monitor. The platform can also monitor document scanners from Kodak Alaris.

Security is the third key focus area, the MPS Monitor platform offers a robust set of security features and capabilities to protect data, users and infrastructure. The company has achieved ISO/IEC 27001 certification and successfully completed the System and Organization Controls 2 Type 1 (SOC 2 Type 1) examination.

With over 30 years of service, Euroform, the company behind the JetAdvice family of managed print services solutions has become a leader in the printing industry with its cloud-based managed print services platforms for global clients, through development, maintenance and support of these systems.

JetAdvice empowers thousands of dealers, distributors and OEMs across the world to remotely assess, manage, maintain, secure and optimise customers’ office, large format and thermal printer fleet environments. The JetAdvice cloud solution, hosted on Microsoft Azure, is also managed within an Information Security Management System which is certified as compliant with ISO/IEC 27001.

A natural fit

Euroform is a natural fit within this new vertical and sits well alongside MPS Monitor. Both companies operate in complementary territories, for example Euroform is particularly strong in the Nordics, while MPS Monitor has a greater presence in the UK and US markets.

“Both products have different positioning, and the MPS Monitor and Euroform brands will not change. We have merged the two organisations and we now have a single team across the entire entity and that means that we have the skills and knowledge and the abilities of both companies which are very complementary, under one roof,” De Blasi said, adding: “There is huge scope for growth within both companies, and with the operational and financial resources we now have, we can accelerate this growth and further increase both companies’ reach and global footprint.”

Features and functionality

There are of course areas where the two technologies could benefit from each other. For example, MPS Monitor’s advanced BI adds significant value to channel partners, Euroform’s platform doesn’t have that same capability. On the other hand, JetAdvice can manage label printers and large-format devices, which MPS Monitor doesn’t currently support.

De Blasi said: “The product plans are not yet finalised, but we will be looking at where we can invest to bring added value to both companies’ customers, by bringing advanced features of one product to the other, where possible. For example, we will consider how to build BI into the JetAdvice solution and to look at bringing the device web access functionality from MPS Monitor DCA4 over to the JetAdvice platform, if it works from a technological perspective – because they are two different technologies.”

Customers will have access to both products and the company is committed to investing in and supporting both platforms. Both MPS Monitor and Euroform have strong relationships.

“Coming together as a single company with a single strategy and single team will further strengthen our joint vendor and partner relationships and maximise our routes to market,” De Blasi said. “Our primary goal is stability and business continuity, we are not changing anything or disrupting anything. MPS Monitor and Euroform will continue to exist as separate business entities, customers will enjoy the same relationships and will be invoiced in the same way whether that’s from MPS Monitor Europe or UK, or Euroform,” he concluded.