Private equity, Mergers and Acquisitions, Mergers and Acquisitions, Content, Unified communications

UCaaS Merger: Private Equity Combines Lifesize, Serenova

Lifesize and Serenova  are merging, backed by private equity firm Marlin Equity Partners, The deal unites video collaboration, meeting productivity, Contact Center-as-a-Service (CCaaS) and Unified Communications as a Service (UCaaS) solutions under one roof. Financial terms were not disclosed.

This is M&A deal Number 145 that ChannelE2E has covered so far in 2020. See the complete M&A deal list here.

L:ifesize CEO Craig Malloy will lead the combined business. Serenova CEO, John Lynch will shift to senior vice president of sales, including strategic oversight of global major accounts. Post-M&A headcount, revenue and profit figures were not disclosed.

The combined business, backed by Marlin Equity Partners, will pursue additional acquisitions in the unified communications sector, the private equity firm indicated.

Lifesize and Serenova Merger: Executive Perspectives

In a prepared statement about the deal, Malloy said:

“Deeper customer and employee engagement through more vivid, direct communications is where the world’s most successful businesses will distinguish themselves from the competition. This merger joins two companies with vast market expertise and cutting-edge, cloud-based solutions. When combined into an integrated platform, we will be uniquely positioned to help organizations deliver communications experiences that far surpass the status quo, from the contact center to the meeting room, and beyond.”

Added Lynch:

“Lifesize has a long track record of innovation in business communications and a strong dedication to customer success. The synergies between Serenova and Lifesize solutions will allow us to revolutionize how businesses communicate with their customers and will deepen the value we can offer to our existing contact center customers worldwide.”

Lifesize History: Growth, Stumble, Pivot, Growth

L:ifesize, founded in 2003, unveiled its first video conferencing products around 2005. The company initially grew fast but experienced turbulence amid the IT industry's shift from hardware and software toward cloud and managed services.

Logitech acquired Lifesize for $405 million in 2009, and layoffs arrived in 2015 amid that continued industry shift toward cloud and managed services. A spin-out from Logitech arrived in 2016.

Fast forward to April 2019, and Lifesize emerged on firmer financial footing with $100 million in revenue.

Among the company's key business and partner moves in recent months:

  • March 1, 2020: Lifesize shifts toward partner commission-centric sales mode in the U.S. Key partners include Synnex and Connection.
  • January 2020: Lifesize partners with Tech Data to reach Australia and New Zealand partners.
  • December 2019: Lifesize introduces Rooms-as-a-Service offering, featuring video meeting room devices, video conferencing service and support with predictable pricing and lower upfront costs.

Seranova M&A History: Meanwhile, Serenova has M&A experience -- particularly in the workforce optimization (WFO) market.

The company's acquisition history includes buying the technology behind ProScheduler platform from Loxysoft in 2019. Earlier, Serenova purchased TelStrat in 2017. The resulting product integrations and R&D gave customers a consolidated, 360-view of customer and agent interactions, Serenova says.

Marlin Equity Partners Understands MSPs, UCaaS Market

Marlin Equity Partners is a familiar name in and around the MSP, UCaaS and software markets. The private equity firm's sample investments include:

Meanwhile, M&A activity in and around the UCaaS market is strong. A list of UCaaS company mergers and acquisitions is here.

Joe Panettieri

Joe Panettieri is co-founder & editorial director of MSSP Alert and ChannelE2E, the two leading news & analysis sites for managed service providers in the cybersecurity market.