In the expanding market of information technology outsourcing, Miami-based Kaseya is a key player.
Through its clients — companies that sell outsourced IT services to thousands of small- and mid-sized businesses in the U.S. and overseas — Kaseya provides specially designed software tools that allow remote monitoring and management of computer systems, cloud management and optimization, security against hackers and other threats, system performance monitoring, business management programs designed to grow revenues and others.
Outsourced IT services are cheaper than managing an in-house IT department.
A privately held firm with more than 900 employees, 16 offices internationally and 2017 revenues of about $200 million, Kaseya sells its services/products to companies called MSPs — managed service providers, or IT service providers. An MSP, in turn, offers a range of IT services to small- and mid-sized companies and other businesses to keep their computer systems running.
For example, Kaseya software tools allow their MSP clients to detect and remotely fix software glitches on a computer or network of computers in Miami being used by an MSP customer, perhaps a retail store or medical office. The MSP itself may be located in another part of Florida or in another state. If a problem cannot be resolved remotely, an MSP will immediately send out a technician from a local office.
Kaseya has expanded rapidly in recent years, said CEO Fred Voccola, growing organically by meeting burgeoning demand for economical outsourced IT services, investing in R&D for new products (over $50 million in 2017 alone) and acquiring other IT companies that expanded its client base and provided expertise in additional IT services, like cloud computing. Last year, the company said it added more than 1,000 new customers who use its professional services automation software.
“Small businesses like a medical or dental office with 10 employees use computers to schedule appointments, make payments, handle billing and medical records, backup data and other things,” Voccola said. When the system goes down, they need an IT expert immediately to get back online and back to business, he said. Downtime means lost business, sometimes lost data and extra costs to fix things. By monitoring a company’s computer system, an MSD can prevent downtime and detect/fix security threats.
Almost every business relies on computers, and companies large and small gradually discovered they could save money on outsourced IT services rather than setting up or managing their own department in house.
“We pioneered outsourced IT management services for small- and mid-sized companies,” Voccola said. “Ten years ago only the biggest companies could have comprehensive IT services.” Today, it’s commonplace.
“We’ve grown partly because we went into the IT outsourcing business at the right time,” he said. “We added about 200 jobs across our network in 2017, and we continue to hire.”
Kaseya is supposedly derived from a Sioux-language word meaning to shield or protect.
Voccola, who took over as CEO in 2015, previously was a senior executive at several IT and software firms. He has a bachelor’s degree in finance from Boston College’s Carroll School of Management.
Company name: Kaseya.
Founded: In Miami in 2001 by Gerald Blackie, an entrepreneur and expert in software and IT.
CEO: Fred Voccola, since 2015.
Owners: New York City-based Insight Venture Partners, a venture capital and private equity firm, plus other private investment companies.
Headquarters: 701 Brickell Ave., Miami.
Employees: about 350 in Miami out of more than 900 worldwide.
Clients: A range of businesses, especially MSPs — or IT service companies — that provide a full range of IT services to small and mid-sized companies in the U.S. and overseas. Some customers are Computex, Axians, UltiSat and United Technology Group.
Financials: Revenues were approximately $200 million in 2017 and the company expects them to continue growing this year, with the goal of reaching $500 million in coming years.
Competitors: Continuum, SolarWinds MSP, Autotask, ConnectWise, Passportal and others.
The difference: Kaseya designed its model to focus on the expanding community of IT service companies working with small- and mid-sized businesses who want to outsource their IT support and save money. Kaseya subscribers pay for software when they need it — Software as a Service (SaaS) — and their products provide clients with a range of services, including programs that help to boost sales and revenue. “We allow our clients to make more money than the competition,” Voccola said.
Client view: “One of our companies — The 20 — is growing faster than any other in this market,” said Tim Conkle, CEO of Texas-based Roland Technology Group and The 20 MSP, which provide a full range of IT services to more than 1,000 small- and mid-sized businesses in Texas and other states. “We were working with another company but they could not scale to work with our multi-tenant model. Kaseya saw what we were doing and wrote the software we needed for our business.” For example, Kaseya provides a variety of systems like a remote monitoring tool that allows Conkle’s firm to alert their customers to a problem — an overheating machine or a hard drive filling up with data – and fix it either remotely or on site before it becomes worse and shuts down the system. “We understand the value of uptime — we save money for our clients,” he said. Kaseya was smart to develop the software Conkle’s firms needed, he said, because they are taking a bigger share of the market. “They made us better and we made them better.”
Business lesson: Because the business expanded so quickly, the company at one point wasn’t “disciplined” about the location of its offices, Voccola said. Kaseya consolidated the number of offices and continued to grow rapidly and with greater efficiency.
Challenges: “Finding more great people” as demand for Kaseya’s services continues to grow, and “staying one step ahead” as the market expands and technology changes, Voccola said.
Strategy and outlook: Continue to achieve strong results through organic growth, acquisitions and R&D investment in new products. Kaseya’s market will expand by double-digits as its customer base — IT service providers working directly with small- and mid-sized businesses – satisfy strong demand for outsourced IT services.
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