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PSA Software M&A: BigTime, Backed By Vista Equity, Acquires Projector PSA

Credit: BigTime Software

BigTime Software, backed by Vista Equity Partners, has acquired Projector PSA, a provider of cloud-based professional services automation software. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

This is technology M&A deal number 625 that ChannelE2E has covered so far in 2022. See more than 1,000 technology M&A deals involving MSPs, MSSPs & IT service providers listed here.

Both BigTime Software and Projector PSA focus on multiple vertical markets -- including MSPs and IT service providers, though ConnectWise Manage and Kaseya's Datto Autotask are generally better known options in the MSP sector.

The M&A deal surfaces only six months after Vista Equity invested $100 million into BigTime. The private equity firm has extensive experience in and around the PSA software market. Indeed, Vista Equity Partners previously owned Datto and Autotask -- which focus on PSA, IT automation, IT management and data protection technologies for MSPs. Vista sold the Datto and Autotask assets to Kaseya in June 2022.

Professional Services Automation Software M&A: Seller and Buyer Backgrounds

Projector PSA, founded in 2003, is based in Boston, Massachusetts. The company has 52 employees listed on LinkedIn. Projector’s PSA software helps project-based services organizations and consulting firms track time and expenses, invoice clients, schedule resources, forecast revenue, manage projects, and monitor actionable project analytics, the seller indicated.

BigTime Software, founded in 2002, is based in Chicago, Illinois. The company has 118 employees listed on LinkedIn. BigTime Founder Brian Saunders previously ran an IT consulting firm for more than 15 years. The company landed in the Inc. 5000 list of fastest-growing privately held businesses in America in 2020 and 2019.

Together, BigTime and Projector PSA have more than over 2,700 customers. The combined business will "provide an operating platform with practice management functionality that helps professional services firms grow with confidence. These cloud-based capabilities will enable firms to plan, manage and receive payment for their most valuable resource – time," the companies indicated.

As part of the deal, Projector PSA CEO Denis Whelan will shift to president of the Projector business unit.

PSA Software M&A: Executive Perspectives

Brian Saunders, CEO, BigTime Software
Brian Saunders, CEO, BigTime Software

In a prepared statement about the deal, BigTime CEO Brian Saunders said:

“This is a unique opportunity to connect Projector’s deep consulting, substantive functionality and sophisticated customer expertise with BigTime’s operational scale and intuitive user experience," said Brian Saunders, CEO and founder of BigTime. "Our combined strengths enable us to better serve the needs of the middle market and, together, our capabilities will allow our customers to drive operational excellence and maximize profitability.”

Added Projector CEO Denis Whelan:

“We have been laser focused on delivering industry leading software and services that have enabled incredible growth for our customers and for Projector. What excites us most about this combination is the ability to leverage BigTime’s innovation at scale to bring Projector's core strengths to an even wider audience."

Rachel Arnold, Vista Equity Partners

Noted  Rachel Arnold, co-head of Vista's Endeavor Fund and senior managing director:

“We invested in BigTime to further advance their vision to develop best-in-class solutions and capitalize on the multibillion-dollar underserved market opportunity for professional services automation. The combination with Projector strengthens its position as a clear leader with the right combination of technology, talent and brand trust to capture that opportunity.”

Todd Gibby, Lock 8

Concluded Todd Gibby, managing partner of Lock 8 Partners, a which maintains a stake in Projector PSA:

“We are extremely proud of the growth and scale that Projector has achieved since our initial investment in 2019. As we look forward, we couldn’t be more excited to invest alongside Vista Equity in a combination that will ensure the trajectory of the services economy is profitable, efficient, and geared for growth.”

Projector tapped Peak Technology Partners for financial guidance and Goodwin Procter for legal guidance on the deal.

PSA Software Market: Growth Forecast, MSP Options

The PSA software market remains in growth mode. Sales of PSA software will reach $16 billion by 2025, which represents an 11.7% compound annual growth rate (CAGR) from 2019, according to Grand View Research.

Although ConnectWise and Autotask (now owned by Kaseya) are two of the best-known PSA options for MSPs, multiple alternatives and upstarts are in the market.

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.