Riverside Partners Acquires Calero: TEM in Transistion

Calero Logo
Calero

On September 13th, 2017, Riverside Partners, a Boston-based private equity firm, announced the acquisition of Calero Software from Clearlake Capital. Calero manages more than $6 billion of annual telecom, mobility, and cloud spend for more than 3,000 customers in 40+ countries and provides managed mobility services for more than 400,000 devices, making it one of the largest technology expense management solutions overall behind Tangoe’s $38 billion+ in technology expense management and Flexera’s $13 billion+ in software expense management. (Cass does not break out its telecom spend, but Amalgam believes it to be similar in scale to Calero.)

This blog covers Amalgam’s perspective on:

  1. Why Clearlake sold Calero.
  2. Who is Riverside Partners, a relatively new player in the TEM space?
  3. What to expect from Calero going forward.
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Amalgam Insights Publishes SmartList on 8 Hidden Gems in Telecom Expense Management

Snapshot for AI's 8 Hidden Gems for Telecom Expense Management
SL0917A-AI Vendor SmartList – snapshot

Over the past decade, Telecom Expense Management has evolved substantially from its roots of telecom and network spend to a more holistic combination that also includes mobility, end user computing, Software as a Service, and Infrastructure as a Service. Because of this expansion of spend, TEM has evolved from Telecom Expense to Technology Expense Management which can be used to manage the majority of enterprise IT.

Amalgam finds that there are a number of high-quality TEM solutions that are hiding under the radar of enterprise buyers despite being market leaders. As an example, in May of 2017 Gartner put together a Market Guide of Telecom Expense vendors including vendors handling multiple billions of dollars in technology spend such as Calero, Cass Information Systems, Cimpl, Dimension Data, MDSL, Tangoe, and WidePoint as well as strong competitors Comview, Mobile Solutions, Network Control, Saaswedo, TNX, and VoicePlus. Although these Gartner-named vendors all provide TEM solutions that are appropriate for various market sectors and needs, Amalgam believes that a number of strong competitors were left out both in the multi-billion dollar management and the strong competitor categories that should be considered in competitive vendor selection environments.

To provide additional insight and to ensure that representative global vendors such as the largest standalone Australian TEM vendor and the largest standalone European TEM vendor were covered, Amalgam is proud to present 8 Hidden Gems for Telecom Expense Management available at no cost for the first 100 downloaders.

Sumeru Equity Partners Acquires MDSL and Combines with Telesoft

money-graph
Title Page: SEP Acquires MDSL
SEP Acquires MDSL

Note: Updated August 2nd with coverage links from Sumeru, MDSL, Telesoft, AltAssets, AOTMP, Crunchbase, PEHub, and Pitchbook.

In case you missed the announcement, as of July 31st, Sumeru Equity Partners has acquired MDSL and is joining Telesoft with MDSL to form a single Technology Expense Management company. I had a few opinions about the new MDSL that didn’t fit into my more formal analysis because they’re observations rather than directional guidance. If you haven’t read the formal Market Milestone yet, please check it out.

First, Sumeru Equity Partners has an interesting portfolio of companies that could be accretive to the new MDSL company. Take a look at their current portfolio:

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Infor and the 80% Solution: Coleman, Birst, GT Nexus, and CloudSuites

Better, Cheaper, Faster is a myth in a cloud-enabled world.
Coleman is Infor's Artificial Intelligence Effort
Coleman is Infor’s Artificial Intelligence Effort

When I represented Amalgam Insights at Inforum, I was wondering if I would be a fish out of water. After all, I am not an ERP analyst. I am not a retail analyst. I am not an HR technology analyst. And those are the first three things I think of when Infor comes to mind. As an analyst who focuses on technology consumption and bridging gaps between the CIO and CFO, I was wondering what would grab my attention other than Infor’s acquisition of Birst.

I was pleasantly surprised by the clarity of Infor’s vision of supporting industry-specific technology consumption. Infor ended up bringing up three key ideas that are core to the future of technology consumption and will end up being strategic considerations for the future of IT.

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What Is Technology Consumption Management?

Better, Cheaper, Faster is a myth in a cloud-enabled world.
Better, Cheaper, Faster is a myth in a cloud-enabled world.
Better, Cheaper, Faster is an IT lie.

Technology Consumption Management is at the core of Amalgam Insights’ research, advisory, and consulting efforts to bridge the CIO and CFO offices. In today’s world, we have instant access to cloud-based scale, massive processing power, artificial intelligence and machine learning APIs, automated data modelling and integration, mobility and IoT devices, and collaborative platforms. The question is no longer whether technology can support our business goals, but how we identify, purchase, and adopt the technologies that we need.

Traditionally, the goals of IT were to provide “Better, Cheaper, and Faster” technology. However, with the emergence of the cloud, subscription and varible pricing, and consumerized demands for technology, this cliche no longer applies. Amalgam Insights would argue that world-class technological resources are now available on-demand at relatively low costs for proof-of-concept projects. In this world, the traditional measures of “Cheaper” and “Faster” are only marginally relevant for competent IT sourcers. In addition, the idea of “Better” has largely transformed from measures of storage, processing power, and speed to purpose-built technology experiences to support business outcomes.

Digital Transformation is an important and foundational paradigm shift for IT Management.

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How does the 2017 version of HPE support enterprise IT departments?

Meg Whitman at HPE Discover 2017

Meg Whitman at HPE Discover 2017
Meg Whitman at HPE Discover 2017
Recently, Amalgam Insights attended HPE Discover, HPE’s semi-annual show devoted to its enterprise offerings. Our firm was especially interested in seeing how HPE would position itself after having divested much of its software portfolio to Micro Focus and then spin-merging its Enterprise Services division with CSC to form DXC Technology on April 1st of this year.

In HPE’s General Session and subsequent presentations, several key themes emerged in HPE’s positioning. The most obvious is that, in consolidating HPE’s offerings to servers, storage, and networking, the company is now focused on being the arms dealer for hybrid IT support. This is based both on the core HPE portfolio of technology and services as well as removing the business services and complementary technologies that were previously seen as competitive to potential HPE competitors. This fundamental change should serve HPE well.

How HPE found its focus

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