Feb 22 2018

Talking BIM and digital transformation

Last week, I was interviewed by Jim McHale of Stockholm, Sweden-based smart building research consultancy Memoori about collaboration, vendor M&A activity, building information modelling, digital transformation, smart buildings and related areas. Jim has posted the video online – it’s just over 20 minutes long:

Permanent link to this article: http://extranetevolution.com/2018/02/talking-bim-and-digital-transformation/

Feb 20 2018

Aconex delivers ‘solid’ first half growth

Aconex logo 2014Melbourne, Australia-based SaaS construction collaboration technology provider Aconex has had what it describes as a ‘solid’ half-year performance. The company has announced its results for the six months to 31 December 2017, showing revenues growing 13% to A$86.9m – c. £49.1m or US$68.6m or €55.6m – compared to A$77m for the corresponding period in 2016.

Aconex CEO Leigh Jasper said the result reflected a strong international performance:

Leigh Jasper“During the half year there was again a strong revenue performance in our international markets, especially the high-growth Americas and Asia regions. This highlights the success of our targeted strategic initiatives and ability to leverage the Aconex brand and global scale to expand our user network, increase customer value and further extend our leadership position.”

New business wins and the ongoing conversion of project customers to enterprise agreements drove a 10% uplift in Australia and New Zealand revenues. Revenues generated outside of the ANZ region increased 16%, and now constitute 68% of total revenue.  Revenue growth was highest in the Americas region which delivered a 31% uplift on the prior corresponding period, while revenue in Asia increased 22%.

EBITDA from core operations, excluding acquisition and integration costs, increased 23% to $9.1 million, compared with $7.4 million in the prior corresponding period.

The company said transition of customers to enterprise agreements had increased revenue from such arrangements from 44% to 47% of total revenues; in the ANZ region, 69% of revenue derives from enterprise agreements.

Aconex also said customer feedback has been positive towards the proposed Oracle acquisition. The scheme is subject to a shareholders meeting in Melbourne on 14 March 2018.

My view

The 13% revenue growth is a marked slowdown from the 38% growth reported in February 2017 (post), which followed an earlier trading update in which Jasper had been downbeat about growth prospects, revised down earlier operating profit forecasts from between 62% and 84% growth to between 10% and 32% growth. While these latest figures are disappointing, the impact will be negligible given that most shareholders are likely to be cashing in their shares soon.

With the Aconex board strongly recommending shareholders accept the Oracle offer, these results are likely to be the last financial reports issued by the firm. Assuming the deal is nodded through, Aconex will become the dominant product set in Oracle’s Construction and Engineering Global Business Unit (alongside the Primavera and Textura offerings), giving it combined revenues of around A$320m (c. £180m or US$252m or €204m) – figures only rivalled by the leading construction software houses such as Autodesk and Trimble (though both have interests outside AEC, substantial non-SaaS portfolios, and in Trimble’s case, substantial technology hardware products), with most of the pure-SaaS AEC rivals some distance behind.

The ongoing push to close enterprise deals may also reflect some competitive pressures. In Aconex’s domestic ANZ region, for example, US SaaS provider Procore set up an Australasian operation in early 2017, and claims 150% client growth over a ten-month period while bolstering the local team to over forty employees (see news story). Procore has just appointed former Salesforce executive Tom Karemacher to oversee its sales, marketing and operational strategies across the Asia Pacific region, and lead the team operating out of the Sydney office. In the US, Oracle/Aconex may also face stronger competition from Trimble following its recent US$500m acquisition of e-Builder, and that competition may extend more widely if Trimble successfully rolls out Trimble Connect internationally.

Permanent link to this article: http://extranetevolution.com/2018/02/aconex-delivers-solid-first-half-growth/

Feb 12 2018

Invicara CEO: “We need a new generation of CDE vendors”

Invicara CEO Anand Mecheri is looking to shake-up the SaaS CDE market by stressing it’s all about data, not files.

invicara-logoLast month (January 2018), construction products giant Kingspan announced a US$10 million investment in Invicara, the developer of BIM Assure, a cloud-based building information model checking application. Soon after that announcement, I talked to Invicara’s founder and CEO, Anand Mecheri about his business and its intended future direction.

Serial entrepreneur

Anand Mecheri (Invicara)Indian-born Mecheri trained as an electronics engineer and in 1989 set out to be an entrepreneur, although success was initially elusive (“I first learned how not to do business”). But, encouraged by his father, he tried again, bootstrapping and scaling a successful security, safety and building automation systems business, Chennai-based DATS, growing it to a 300-strong business achieving revenue growth of around 30% a year.

In 2003 he embarked on his first capital-raising exercise, and in 2005 acquired Dublin-based Europlex, another provider of security control and management technologies, merging the businesses to form the iMetrex Group, with combined revenues of around US$23m. Four years later, sporting US$40m in revenue, iMetrex was acquired by the building technologies division of Siemens AG and Mecheri stayed with the business as the division’s chief marketing officer in Switzerland helping developing Siemens’ digital strategy.

BIM: Great potential, not yet realised

Having made the transition from entrepreneur to multinational corporate once, in 2012 he decided he wanted to start a new business. “I encountered building information modelling, was fascinated by it, and decided to develop my next business around it,” he recalled. “BIM is a great concept with a great aspiration, but its potential has not yet been fully realised.

He says the vision of BIM is about creating a platform for building data from different sources, and then assembling an integrated database. “But nobody was building the platforms, and no platforms will succeed if the base data is bad (garbage in, garbage out, of course) – and BIM, particularly at Level 1, has been too focused on drawing deliverables rather than data.”

At Invicara, Mecheri says, “digitisation is about everyone using data to drive workflows.” BIM Level 2 has greater potential, he believes, as it is more focused on data. BIM Assure was developed to assure high quality BIM data, after which customers can extend their data, augmenting the geometry and graphics of models with richer data, but not necessarily only within the design tools.

Invicara - data is the key

“The transition to being data-driven won’t be quick. Data still isn’t a high priority for everybody; supply chain interest in data only materialises when the client demands delivery of data to agreed standards. We need more aware owners and more mature practitioners. So it’s early days for BIM. It’s a marathon not a sprint, but I see Invicara as one of the first movers.”

Data-driven early manufacturer involvement

Mecheri has not had to rush the development of the Invicara platform. He says he has used the past four years to get deep context to industry problems and opportunities through customer engagements and to validate his data-oriented business model. He also believes the key is to integrate the manufacturer into the digital design process from the outset.

“Every manufacturer needs to look at their digital portfolio, and be able to provide digital product data today if they want to continue to sell in the future. Designers are currently reticent about assuming liability for designs when the detail originates from the manufacturer, so they need to collaborate with manufacturers on design development. And manufacturers need to be more sophisticated. Successful collaboration will be more than just publishing object models via object libraries or on the manufacturer’s own website.”

In Mecheri’s view, Invicara provides visibility of how products are incorporated into designs, assembled into systems, and operated in buildings. It provides a data connection from manufacturer right through to the asset owner-operators’ data needs.

Kingspan logoIts platform can enable clients, designers and manufacturers to collaborate in the early stages of product design. Working with Kingspan will provide much-needed context to the challenge, he said, helping Invicara pilot solutions.

Data not documents

Invicara takes a different approach to the current generation of ‘Common Data Environment’ (CDE) vendors. They come from an EDMS background; we come from a world of data. We are data-centric, not just documents which have no intelligence. We start from validated data and then enable clients to put good data on top of that, and to then get actionable intelligence from their built assets. As our entry point is different, so our approach to APIs is different.”

He says Invicara will provide application programming interfaces (APIs) to allow data to flow between the systems of all the participants in project design, delivery and operation, facilitated by a new generation of CDE vendors. “We will need open data models, no silos, no duplication. The APIs will build bridges between the different systems so that data is synchronised.”

The first release of BIM Assure created a plugin for Autodesk’s Revit, but Invicara also has an IFC publisher, but these are effectively work-arounds to overcome current industry practices where client data can get locked in proprietary formats. Mecheri says we need data that is fit for everybody’s purpose:

“BIM Assure is BIM agnostic. We have one standardised view of the data model able to cope with multiple sources, and so we can develop plugins to draw data in from other solutions. And we are the only vendor providing rules-based BIM data validation in the cloud (Solibri does BIM validation but on the desktop) – and the future is all about the cloud.”

However, we are still in the early stages of the marathon. “This is the biggest, most complex, and least digitised industry on the planet. The big boys will stay on side lines until they see it heating up, and they tend to catch up through M&A, acquiring multiple diverse tools sets and attempt to integrate them – which does not always provide the best result. But data will grow in value, particularly when asset owners start to analyse their business operational metrics and see how better economic, environmental and social performance is related to how their built assets perform.”

Permanent link to this article: http://extranetevolution.com/2018/02/invicara-ceo-we-need-a-new-generation-of-cde-vendors/

Feb 08 2018

Laing CIO is new think project! non-exec

Thinkproject-logoMunich, Germany-based SaaS construction collaboration vendor think project! will be getting advice from one of UK construction’s most prominent chief information officers. Gareth Burton, CIO at UK-based main contractor Laing O’Rourke, has been appointed as a non-executive member of the company’s board.

Burton worked in various technology companies including Motorola and BT, and has held board level IT positions within the oil and gas, mining and construction sectors, serving as CIO for Baker Hughes, African Minerals and Laing O’Rourke, gaining insight into the technology and process automation requirements of construction businesses. He established the UK Construction CIO Forum (not to be confused with the ACE CIO conference) and is an advisor to the engineering department at Swansea University (where he gained an engineering and mathematics degree before attended the International Executive Program at Insead Business School in Paris). He said:

“I am delighted to join the think project! Board, particularly given that the construction sector is one of the leading market segments for embracing the benefits of digitisation. Customers in this market are dealing with some of the most complex global engineering projects and must ensure the complete ecosystem of architects, designers, contractors, sub-contractors and supply chain are seamlessly connected and able to communicate at speed and leverage the benefits of BIM standards and mobile technology.”

(Note: CIO Gareth Burton is a different person to the Gareth Burton who was construction director at Laing O’Rourke, 2005-2014 – now working in Canada.)

Permanent link to this article: http://extranetevolution.com/2018/02/laing-cio-is-new-think-project-non-exec/

Feb 05 2018

Trimble acquires e-Builder for $500m

Just over a month after Oracle bid US$1.2 billion for Aconex, Trimble has invested US$500m to buy one of Aconex’s US-based SaaS competitors, e-Builder.

Trimble logoOn Friday 2 February, Trimble announced (news release) it had acquired privately-held Florida, US-based SaaS construction project management vendor e-Builder for US$500 million (c. £357m or €403m). Trimble says “e-Builder extends Trimble’s ability to accelerate industry transformation by providing an integrated project delivery solution for owners, program managers and contractors across the design, construct and operate lifecycle.”

e-Builder-logoAccording to the news release, e-Builder currently manages more than US$300 billion of construction project value and over 200,000 projects from some of the most influential owners in North America. Annual revenues were reported to be around US$53 million, and growing at over 20%.

e-Builder back story

It is one of the AEC SaaS sector’s longest established firms, having been founded by brothers Jon and Ron Antevy in 1995, and has featured in ExtranetEvolution regularly over the past decade or so. In August 2011, the Miami/Fort Lauderdale company had around 60 staff, with about 25,000 users of its software, mainly in the US and Canada, and it regarded Meridian’s Prolog as its principle competitor (Trimble had acquired Meridian in 2006).

Two-and-a-half years later, in February 2014, e-Builder’s workforce had almost doubled and was forecast to reach 135 people by the end of the year. Some US$100bn of projects were being managed on the platform, predominantly in North America, with most of its customers being owner/operators in healthcare, education and government bodies. Revenues were said to be growing at 40% per annum, but BIM was still at an early stage for most of e-Builder’s customers. However, in July 2015, e-Builder acquired Scenario VPD, a BIM developer.

Trimble connecting

In addition to its 2006 Meridian acquisition, Trimble has been expanding its SaaS construction collaboration capabilities. It acquired Google’s SketchUp in 2012, which was consolidated alongside the Meridian products into its Trimble Buildings design-build-operate (DBO) offering. Then, in September 2014, it acquired Gehry Technologies’ GTeam platform, subsequently relaunched as Trimble Connect (October 2014). And it launched a mobile-oriented platform, Trimble ProjectSight, in December 2014.

Trimble acquisition rationale

Trimble’s presence in construction is focused, first, on civil engineering projects, second, on the construction of buildings and structures. It says both will benefit from the e-Builder acquisition. “Trimble solutions leverage constructible Building Information Model (BIM) workflows to integrate processes, improve information fidelity, reduce rework, establish transparency and deliver higher productivity. By using Trimble technologies, contractors and owners are realizing substantial reductions in total project cost.”

Steven Berglund, president and CEO of Trimble, says:

“e-Builder has always recognized that owners play a key role in the construction lifecycle and that their influence will be key to the adoption of transformative construction technology. Trimble will extend its reach into the owner community by leveraging e-Builder’s presence. In turn, we intend to aggressively bring e-Builder solutions to civil and building contractors and the international market. We see a significant opportunity in leveraging data and intelligence gained through design-construct workflows across the full infrastructure lifecycle. e-Builder’s solutions and, more importantly, its organization provide a strong platform for significant growth.”

Ron Antevy, president and CEO of e-Builder, says:

Ron Antevy“e-Builder’s mission is to improve project execution to make construction faster, less expensive and more reliable. The addition of our solutions to Trimble’s broad portfolio extends our collective ability to best support owners and contractors with project delivery and management. e-Builder current and future customers will benefit from Trimble’s construction management expertise, culture of innovation and global reach to take e-Builder solutions to the next level.”

The e-Builder business will be reported as part of the Buildings and Infrastructure Segment.

Quick reaction

Hardly a month seems to go by without announcements about mergers and acquisitions in the construction software sector, with Software-as-a-Service businesses seemingly very much in demand. Oracle’s pitch for Aconex valued the Australian vendor at around ten times revenue, while Trimble’s acquisition of e-Builder is almost 9.5 times revenue, underlining the attractiveness of SaaS additions to a wider software portfolio.

The deal won’t particularly extend the geographical reach of Trimble’s SaaS portfolio – much of its Trimble Connect heartland remains in Meridian’s old core north American market  – but it will expand its reach into owner/operator organisations and into businesses operating in the building, as opposed to civil engineering, sector.

Permanent link to this article: http://extranetevolution.com/2018/02/trimble-acquires-e-builder-for-500m/

Jan 30 2018

Shortlisted for smartest blogger

BIMShowLive 2018 is coming up in a month’s time – in Newcastle-upon-Tyne, UK, on 28 February and 1 March 2018 – but first there is the little matter of the BIM Awards, being held on 27 February.

To my surprise, I have been shortlisted in the ‘Smartest Blogger’ category, where:

BIM Awards Finalist 2018… an individual … posts messaging on their company/personal websites directly related to BIM and digital construction. We’re looking for topical, current and possibly controversial content which has consistently made a genuine and meaningful contribution to the built environment.”

I am flattered to be shortlisted – alongside Rob Jackson of Bond Bryan and BRE’s Dan Rossiter, both of whom write far more knowledgeably about BIM than I do – but the nomination does at least give me an excuse to reflect on the past 12 years or so….

History

ExtranetEvolution started in September 2005 following publication of a book about construction collaboration technologies I wrote for publisher Taylor & Francis (today part of Routledge) while working at what was then BIW Technologies. The blog was originally intended to help me produce a second edition of the book, but it took on a life of its own. By the time I left BIW (later Conject and now part of Aconex) and started out as an independent consultant in February 2009, the blog had become something of a shop window for my expertise, as well as a news and features resource for anyone interested in construction, collaboration, cloud computing, Software-as-a-Service, and related areas such as mobile, social media and BIM. (As I have said many times, “it’s a small niche, but it’s my niche“.)

Initially, a little UK-centric, it has also expanded to include more content about developments in Europe, the US and Australasia, among other places. Since 2005, I have covered a succession of acquisitions and mergers, personnel changes, numerous product launches and industry conferences. I have interviewed senior figures representing most of the major AEC-oriented collaboration vendors, and a great many more startups. I have watched businesses grow – and seen a few die – and recorded their ups and downs along the way.

Statistically speaking

I have used two blogging platforms: first, Typepad and, since 2011, WordPress, publishing nearly 1800 blog posts. Since February 2009 (when my Google Analytics records start), the blog has had 1.24 million page views, and more than 270,000 users.

In 2011, ExtranetEvolution had its then best year, delivering 59,416 page impressions to 23,746 unique visitors. In 2014, I topped 100,000 page views, with content read by nearly 49,000 visitors; my 2015 visitor total was just short of 52,000 – still my best year.

ExtranetEvolution users 2009-17My most visited post is from February 2013 (16 reasons why nobody yet dominates the construction SaaS collaboration sector – viewed over 15,000 times), while the daily peak was 2,641 when I wrote about Aconex’s acquisition of Conject in March 2016. M&A activity is clearly a recurring interest; my 2017 peak was in December, following Oracle’s offer to buy Aconex.

(I have been a little less productive in terms of blog posts in the past two years, mainly for family reasons – my stepmother died in early 2016, my father died in July 2017, and I had three other family bereavements – but also pressure of other work.)

Thanks to everyone who has supported ExtranetEvolution since 2005, and thanks to whoever nominated me for the BIM Awards!

Permanent link to this article: http://extranetevolution.com/2018/01/shortlisted-for-smartest-blogger/

Jan 29 2018

Ruddle to head GenieBelt UK

GenieBelt logoCopenhagen, Denmark-based GenieBelt, the mobile-first developer of cloud-based construction software, has appointed Jason Ruddle as managing director of its new UK operation with effect from April 2018.

GenieBelt has historically retained strong personal connections with the UK. When I first talked in detail about the company (October 2014), my initial contacts were with one-time Davis Langdon QS and project manager Gari Nickson, and it had appointed former Woobius founder, architect and SaaS and app user experience expert Bob Leung as part of the GenieBelt team. The company claims its platform is now used on over 20,000 projects in over 100 countries.

I have been hearing rumours about a GenieBelt UK launch for at least a year, and it seems it’s finally going to happen. GenieBelt CEO Ulrik Branner says: “The recruitment of Jason Ruddle marks an exciting and important step in our global expansion. Jason’s experience and knowledge of the UK market will bring significant benefits to us in delivering transparency and efficiency to the construction industry.”

Ruddle joins GenieBelt from AIM-listed Elecosoft, the provider of Asta Powerproject, and has over 25 years’ experience in construction software. He was appointed head of sales for Asta in 2013, and from January 2015 to December 2017 was MD of the Thame, Oxfordshire-based Elecosoft UK. While he was at Elecosoft, Asta launched its mobile PowerProject Site Progress app, complementing its desktop solution (a Citrix-based SaaS option is also available). Other Elecosoft applications include IconSystem, a cloud-based asset management solution deployed by several major UK retailers; the Market Harborough, Leicestershire-based business was acquired by Elecosoft in October 2016 for £2.4m (I wrote about Icon back in 2009).

Permanent link to this article: http://extranetevolution.com/2018/01/ruddle-to-head-geniebelt-uk/

Jan 18 2018

Invicara gets $10m from Kingspan

Ireland-based building materials giant Kingspan invests US$10m in BIM technology supplier Invicara.

BIM AssureSome 18 months ago, in August 2016, I wrote about BIM Assure, a cloud-based building information model checking service developed by the US-based Invicara. At the time this startup had offices in Ann Arbor in Michigan, plus India and Singapore, but it now also has offices in the British Isles – an Ireland base in Dublin and a UK base in Egham, Surrey. The latter is presumably where Andy Hamer, formerly CEO of the Surrey-based Codebook* and now director of customer success at Invicara, hangs out – I bumped into Andy at a BIM event in southeast London last week and, following recent news of mergers and acquisitions, he hinted an announcement might be imminent….

Today I learned that Invicara has received a US$10m investment (for a minority stake) from the Ireland-based building materials group Kingspan, well-known (in the UK at least) for its insulation products, access floors, environmental, solar and other M&E products and systems. According to Kingspan’s news release:

Kingspan logoWith this investment, Kingspan has made a definitive commitment to the development of a solution for digitalisation of the construction industry.

Invicara has developed solutions that integrate with Building Information Modelling (BIM) technology. BIM provides detailed digital representations of buildings, allowing time and cost saving collaboration between partners on construction projects such as architects, engineers, contractors, and owners.

Working with Kingspan, Invicara will use its cloud-based platform to build a new solution that uses design and construction data to create new digital workflows that transform the customer experience.

Kingspan’s Louise Foody (director of digital and brand) and Mike Stenson (head of innovation) will join the Invicara board. Foody says:

For manufacturers of building systems and solutions, digitalisation enabled by technologies like BIM is a game changer. At Kingspan, we aim to leverage digital technologies to further align our offerings with our customer’s needs and more efficiently collaborate with owners, designers, and contractors at every stage of the building lifecycle.

invicara-logoBIM Assure, the first product built on the Invicara platform, provides a cloud-based data management solution that helps owners and their design and construction partners create a data-rich ‘digital twin’ of a building. The product is currently used on projects in North America, Ireland, the UK, Australia, and Singapore. Invicara says it is planning significant new capabilities for release in 2018, and will extend its reach thanks to Kingspan’s global presence in key market segments such as airports, healthcare, data centres, and retail (among others).

Anand Mecheri, CEO and Founder of Invicara says:

Our relationship with Kingspan opens a new market opportunity for Invicara – providing us with deep context to build powerful solutions on the Invicara platform, enabling product manufacturers to participate in the digitalisation of construction. From the start, Invicara’s vision has been to improve the value derived from BIM for the entire ecosystem of the built environment – providing an efficient flow of reliable data for a wide range of workflows.

[* Disclosure: Codebook is a past customer of pwcom.co.uk Ltd. Another former Codebook employee, Sam Oliver, joined Invicara as application services consultant in late 2017.]

Permanent link to this article: http://extranetevolution.com/2018/01/invicara-gets-10m-from-kingspan/

Jan 10 2018

Trimble connects with VolkerWessels

Trimble logoUS construction technology provider Trimble has announced a strategic partnership with the Dutch construction business VolkerWessels to advance the latter’s use of Building Information Management (BIM) technology and improve the management and predictability of the contractor’s construction projects.

ProjectSight logoAs part of the collaboration, Trimble will closely work with VolkerWessels’ stakeholders to gather real-world feedback for continued innovation in BIM-centric construction. In addition to deployment of Trimble construction technologies (including the Trimble Connect SaaS collaboration platform and Trimble ProjectSight, both launched in 2014), the collaboration also includes professional and integration services performed by Trimble and Construsoft, a Trimble integrator based in the Netherlands.

“Trimble excels at putting construction data to work,” said Marinus den Harder, director of construction and real estate development at VolkerWessels. “Trimble’s data-centric approach to BIM provides us with analytics and business intelligence that we can use to extend our competitive advantage.”

By using Trimble Connect and Trimble ProjectSight, VolkerWessels (which has offices in the Netherlands, Belgium, the UK, Germany and Canada / United States) says it will streamline the sharing of construction models, data and project information between key project stakeholders.

“Our close collaboration with VolkerWessels enables both companies to innovate while driving greater value in the design, build and operate phases of construction,” said Roz Buick, vice president at Trimble. “We greatly value this key customer relationship enabling us both to seek insights for buildings, infrastructure and real estate industries.”

Update (4pm, 10 January 2018) – Trimble’s connection to the Netherlands was extended by its recent acquisition of Stabiplan (announced last week), a 3D CAD software and BIM content provider for the mechanical, electrical and plumbing (MEP) industries.

Permanent link to this article: http://extranetevolution.com/2018/01/trimble-connects-with-volkerwessels/

Jan 10 2018

New CEO at GroupBC

GroupBCReading, UK-based SaaS collaboration vendor GroupBC has appointed construction software industry veteran Wes Simmons as its CEO. He succeeds Sanjeev Shah, who is taking on a new role in developing GroupBC’s strategic industry partnerships (see GroupBC news release).

Simmons was until recently managing director of construction ERP vendor Eque2, where he grew the business from a £5m business to one generating annual revenues of £15m. He started his construction career as a quantity surveyor and has worked in construction IT for major corporates including SAP, Unisys and Misys, gaining valuable experience of international business. Simmons has also worked with private equity partners to grow businesses the size of GroupBC into more successful and more valuable assets both through organic growth and through mergers and acquisitions. GroupBC and Eque2 share some of the same investors.

Sanjeev Shah and Wes Simmons, GroupBCSanjeev Shah (above left, with Wes Simmons) led the management buyout of the GroupBC business from Unit4 in November 2014, growing the business’s revenues to £3.795m in the year to 30 November 2016, increasing sales by 33% and boosting profitability by 77% year on year. The company also more than doubled its headcount, from 20 to 45 employees, over the same period (it’s now 55). During 2017 it further developed its BIM capabilities, rolled out its BC7 release, launched its GeoConnect+ service (developed in partnership with consultancy PCSG and Ordnance Survey), and developed technology partnerships with firms including CEMAR and Opentree. And a strengthened sales team (including Stuart Bell and Gavin O’Neill, both formerly of Union Square) won new customers including retailers Sainsbury’s and JD Sports, Jarvis Construction and the Houses of Parliament. (Many of these developments were discussed at GroupBC’s user conference in September 2017.)

GroupBC is now investing in a partner channel strategy. “I believe there is a great opportunity for GroupBC to expand without just putting more sales people on the ground,” Simmons said. “We are investing in Sanj as a dedicated resource to develop existing strategic partnerships with firms like PCSG, Wieneberger and IBM, and to instigate and build relationships with new industry partners. We believe this will help GroupBC extend its reach both across the industry and geographically, including internationally.” In the meantime,  Simmons will take over the day-to-day operational management of the GroupBC business.

[Disclosure: I have provided marketing consultancy services to GroupBC.]

Permanent link to this article: http://extranetevolution.com/2018/01/new-ceo-at-groupbc/

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