MSP, Mergers and Acquisitions, Content, Private equity

Thoma Bravo Acquires Continuum: 10 Things to Know

When Thoma Bravo confirmed the Continuum buyout today, it invited plenty of questions from established MSPs and newcomers to the industry. All of our deal coverage is posted here. But for those who need a quick serving of the details here are 10 things to know.

1. Who Is Continuum? The company specializes in automation for MSPs. Focus areas include RMM (remote monitoring and management), BDR (backup and disaster recovery), NOC (network operations center), help desk and a forthcoming SOC (security operations center) service.

2. Who Is Thoma Bravo?: A well-known private equity firm that also has ownerships stakes in Bomgar, McAfee and SolarWinds MSP.

3. Is the deal about investing for growth or cutting costs?: Continuum is now part of a Thoma Bravo growth fund, which suggests the private equity firm has empowered Continuum to pursue acquisitions rather than cutting costs. Still, we're checking on the company's headcount plans.

4. Do Continuum and rival SolarWinds MSP have the same owner? Partially. Thoma Bravo owns Continuum, and owns a stake in SolarWinds. Silver Lake Partners also owns a stake in SolarWinds. But that does NOT mean Continuum and SolarWinds will somehow merge or combine forces. The two companies remain completely separate and will continue to compete in the MSP sector, we've been told.

5. Will Continuum change executive staffs under the new ownership? Nope. Continuum CEO Michael George says he's focused on the company's long-term growth and he has no plans to step away from the business. And the current executive team is ready to carry the baton forward, he adds.

6. Will Continuum partner with other Thoma Bravo businesses? Potentially. Here's a list of Thoma Bravo's other assets and potential synergies with Continuum.

7. How will rivals like Autotask, ConnectWise, Kaseya and SolarWinds respond? We can't speak for them. But here's our best guess about how their owners plan to move forward over the next few years.

8. How large is Continuum? The company's finances are undisclosed. But Continuum manages more than 1 million endpoints for its 5,800 partners, including MSPs servicing more than 60,000 SMB customers, the company indicated. Also, Continuum has about 1,400 employees, up from 400 in 2011.

9. What is Continuum's next move?: The major SOC (security operations center) launch seems like a logical next move.

10. How much did Thoma Bravo pay for Continuum?: That's undisclosed.

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.