Accela seems headed for exit with new CEO
Accela, the practically two decade outdated gov tech startup dreaming of discovering new life as an issue solver for the sharing economic system, introduced in a brand new CEO to switch Maury Blackman who served as the corporate’s anchor since 2007. Throughout Blackman’s tenure, the SaaS firm introduced plenty of open information and regulatory administration options to marketplace for governments.
Mark Jung, the incoming inheritor to the corporate, has a document on the tech govt circuit. He has served on the boards of over a dozen firms, lots of them tech startups, and highlights not more than 11 acquisitions on his resume. We sat down with Jung to get an thought of his imaginative and prescient for Accela and what he might be bringing that Blackman couldn’t.
In accordance with Jung, the largest change from Blackman’s home to his is “constant innovation.” That is an odd declare referencing a former govt who appeared to be within the means of realigning his firm to serve municipalities dealing with 21st century regulatory issues originating from the proliferation of providers like Uber and Airbnb.
Jung says he’s nonetheless squarely targeted on “integrating with compliance,” and needs Accela’s providers to “excel at being modular and configurable.” Jung joined the 17 12 months outdated personal firm final 12 months as a consulting advisor earlier than formally coming on to the board in March of this 12 months.
This timeline suits properly round a big $143 million spherical of financing the corporate took again in 2015. Nearly all of that spherical was devoted to a secondary transaction. The corporate introduced in a brand new personal fairness investor to switch an outdated investor that needed liquidity.
When requested concerning the potential for an IPO, Jung invoked the SEC that prohibits him from discussing plans, however famous he has taken two firms public that he based previously.
“That [going public] is not the highest priority of the company,” added Jung. ” We’re rising on high line and backside line however want techniques and processes in place to accommodate new progress.”
Authorities contracts, like these Accela has with many states and native municipalities, have very low churn charges. Accela has historically labored to construct SaaS options to assist governments handle regulatory filings and licensing paperwork for issues like land use allowing and marijuana licensing. The corporate’s techniques are getting used for the later at this time in Colorado. Greater than 70 p.c of the 50 largest U.S. cities use Accela software program.
However to maximise the possibilities of a wholesome acquisition or public providing, the corporate actually desires to lock down the municipal tech regulation house. This not solely consists of apparent offenders like Uber and Airbnb, however firms like Amazon as they appear towards utilizing drones and robots for supply.
“We need to be the broker and arbitrator between high flying billion dollar companies and cities,” explains Jung.
This finally means constructing out relationships with tech firms in addition to governments. Unicorns like Uber are prepared to drag out of cities that they don’t really feel share their imaginative and prescient for innovation.
With an infusion of some new executives, Jung hopes his firm can construct out and execute on these relationships as quickly as a 12 months from now — maybe even integrating inside in style apps for one-tap filings.
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