Tech entrepreneurs along Polk County’s Silicon Ridge are not surprised by the recent acquisition of Lakeland’s DSM Technology Consultants by a bigger fish in the pond of managed service providers.
Massachusetts-based Thrive Networks, Inc. announced Friday it had acquired Lakeland information technology firm DSM Technology Consultants LLC, a press release said.
Thrive, a “security-first” managed service provider that delivers secure data and IT infrastructure for small to mid-sized enterprises in various industries, did not disclose the price of the transaction.
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Founded in 1986, DSM is a Lakeland-based provider of managed IT services to state and local governments including their education, public safety and agricultural agencies, among others, in the public and private sector, a press release said.
Managed service providers are contractors that remotely manage information technology services for another organization.
The local firm has sought and gained multiple state contracts over decades in business under the DSM.Net name and some 200 more recently as DSM Technology Consultants LLC, a corporation formed in 2012, state records show.
The original DSM.Net Inc. was incorporated in 1997 in Lakeland but was dissolved in 2014, records show.
The Florida Accountability Contracting Tracking website lists DSM landing contracts with multiple agencies for a range of information technology services with the largest in excess of $2 million.
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The firm offered services such as computer maintenance, disaster communications and data recovery for state agencies like the juvenile justice department, citrus department, the governor’s office and FDLE, the FACT website shows.
DSM also works in the private sector.
This is the second acquisition involving DSM within less than a year. In August, the information technology firm had acquired Cipher Integrations, Inc. of Lakeland.
Thrive is also a provider of managed IT services with offerings that include cybersecurity and cloud computing to help companies secure their critical applications and data, the release said.
Joshua Sitta, Co-Founder and CTO of Lakeland-based Sittadel, said mergers among cyber security firms are common as larger firms gain value through the mergers in the order of 10 to 15 times as acquisitions accumulate.
Sitta said he would not be surprised if a couple of deals will fall behind the Thrive acquisition of DSM as the larger firm can become a major national player this way.
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As a cloud, datacenter and managed services provider in Florida, the DSM acquisition provides Thrive with SLED platform capabilities, which Thrive wants to expand nationally, the latest release said
SLED is an acronym for State, Local and Education government agencies.
Focusing on data assurance, DSM offers clients the ability to survive and recover quickly from a data breach or ransomware attack, ensuring business continuity, the release said.
“DSM’s talented engineers and experienced management team will help to greatly enhance our rapidly growing Florida presence,” said Rob Stephenson, CEO of Thrive.
David Robinson, CEO and Founder of DSM, said they are “delighted to be the newest members of the Thrive family as their dedication to providing a personalized IT path towards customer satisfaction complements our commitment to total IT peace of mind for our clients.”
Robinson and Greg Madden, DSM’s COO, will assume senior leadership roles and helm the newly established Thrive SLED group as a special unit focusing on existing government business in Florida, Alabama, and Massachusetts.
In addition, Robinson and Madden will assist in Thrive’s expansion of state and local contracts up and down the East Coast.
DSM is now the third acquisition by Thrive in Florida in the last six months and the DSM acquisition will build on its presence in the Southeast, the release said.
In a Crunchbase report, the trade publication listed 12 acquisitions by Thrive over its nearly one decade in existence. It was bought by private equity firm MC Partners in 2016, the report said. That year Thrive received an infusion of $16.6 million in venture capital.
This year, Thrive also acquired SouthTech in Sarasota, Preemo in Miami and InCare Technologies in Birmingham, Ala., the report said.