Accelo Inc. has raised $9 million in Series A funding and boldly pivoted away from the PSA (professional services automation) moniker -- instead positioning its small business SaaS portfolio as a Service Operations Automation (or ServOps) platform.
We told you to keep an eye on Accelo in January 2016. Investors apparently took note. Level Equity led the Series A funding, announced today, with participation from Fathom Capital and existing investor Blackbird Ventures.
Accelo, a 60-person company, enjoyed rapid growth ahead of the pivot. The company's user base has surged about 120 percent over the past year, and the business has been profitable, Accelo says.
Small businesses leverage the company's platform to manage client operations, including sales, quotes, projects, tickets, retainers, timesheets, billing and scheduling. In some ways, it's a general purpose alternative to MSP- and IT services-centric players like Autotask and ConnectWise, though I certainly wouldn't say that Accelo competes head-on against those players.
Small Business and IT Services Automation: The Evolution
Or am I wrong? At first glance, Accelo is designed to automate and manage small businesses in multiple verticals -- particularly digital and creative agencies, engineering firms, property and architecture firms, PR services, and accounting. But take a closer look, and you'll notice that the company has some know-how with IT service providers and consulting firms.
No doubt, numerous companies -- Autotask, ConnectWise and more -- have broadened their own branding and messaging beyond classic PSA use cases, instead emphasizing overall business automation and management to help partners and customers boost profit margins.
Looking ahead, Accelo thinks it can expand from thousands of clients to "millions of businesses and teams," Geoff McQueen, co-founder and CEO of Accelo, asserted in a prepared statement.
So far, I believe much of Accelo's suite focuses on helping businesses to bid, win and run a project. I don't know if or how well the suite manages recurring revenue contracts, managed and cloud services engagements. But within the IT services area of the website, Accelo does mention the ability to manage all recurring services.