Capital from Private Equity (PE) firms is powering the growth of workplace management software companies, as they redefine and augment their product offerings. Demand is accelerating for digital hybrid workplace concepts which have gained momentum during the pandemic as businesses balance working from home and the return to the office. COVID-19 has reshaped the way businesses think about their workspaces – and understanding who is in a building at any given time is more vital than ever before.
Over the past year, we have seen 7 significant PE investments in the sector, with a focus on financing workplace technology to manage the new normal working environment. The following firms have been the recent recipients of growth equity – Envoy, Traction Guest, iOffice + SpaceIQ, OfficeSpace Software, Condeco Software, iLobby and Tango Analytics.
With four of these deals occurring in the first month of 2022, workplace vendors are seeing an acceleration in market demand for digital solutions, which has enabled them to attract further investment. The product functionality focus is on improving occupant safety and security in commercial buildings through resource scheduling, occupancy analytics, workplace experience and visitor management software.
The first transaction finalized this month was the acquisition of Agilquest by Tango Analytics, a US provider of Integrated Workplace Management Systems (IWMS). AgilQuest’s complimentary space booking solution provides a strategic extension of Tango’s reservations and resource scheduling capabilities. Tango announced in December that it had secured an equity investment from Berkshire Partners to accelerate both US and international growth.
The second transaction this month was a $150 Million strategic investment by Vista Equity Partners in OfficeSpace Software. As organizations embrace hybrid work and continue to evolve their return-to-office decisions, OfficeSpace’s cloud-based platform allows customers to simplify how their employees utilize and interact with their workspace, manage desk and room booking and maintain social distancing. The platform also serves as the system of record for digital office floorplans and provides workflow tools for human resources and facilities management teams. Vista Equity Partners focus on PE investments in enterprise software, data, and technology-enabled companies. Resurgens Technology Partners, a previous investor, retains its stake in the company.
A significant trend in the smart buildings space is the rapidly growing market for Visitor Management System software which has evolved into a solution for managing employees as visitors and has broadened into a more encompassing flexible workplace and security toolset.
The third deal In January was the announcement that Condeco, a UK provider of workplace scheduling solutions had acquired Proxyclick, a Belgian provider of a visitor management platform, augmenting its vertically integrated workspace management suite. The combined solution extends Proxyclick’s visitor and employee check-in platform with Condeco’s meeting room management and desk booking solutions. The acquisition follows Condeco’s strategic growth investment from Thoma Bravo and JMI Equity which was completed in the summer of 2021.
The fourth investment this month was the Series C financing of Envoy’s visitor management platform. The firm secured $111 million led by Brookfield Growth, a strategic partner and growth equity investment arm of Brookfield, one of the world’s largest real estate owners, operators, and investors. Envoy’s platform has broadened to solve the problems of flexible workplaces where teams split their time between home and the office. People can coordinate schedules with co-workers, book desks and rooms, welcome visitors, receive deliveries, verify COVID vaccination and test result status.
Vancouver, Canada-based Traction Guest, offering a cloud-based visitor management solution, was acquired in December 2021 by PSG, a US growth equity firm that focuses on growth-stage software companies. The platform allows organizations to manage employees as visitors while also offering the capability to integrate with employee access control tools, provide at-home registrations, synchronize with HR databases and support multiple space-booking tools for physical distancing.
In January 2021, iLobby was one of the early recipients of strategic funding for a visitor management platform to address the new customer needs driven by the pandemic. Global venture capital and private equity firm Insight Partners invested over $100 million in the company to scale its go-to-market and expand its product functionality to meet the rising demand for enterprise visitor management in the 45 countries it serves and beyond. iLobby rolled out a COVID-focused pre-screening questionnaire for visitors, along with a touchless sign-in solution and fever testing.
The final and most sizeable transaction backed by private equity was the merger of IOffice and SpaceIQ in August 2021. Backed by Thoma Bravo, Waud Capital and JMI Equity, several businesses formerly known as Archibus, Serraview, Teem, ManagerPlus and Hippo CMMS have been brought together under the IOffice and SpaceIQ umbrella, which has created one of the top pure-play vendors in the integrated workplace management space.
PE firms are competing successfully with venture capital companies and corporate investors to enter the high-growth digital workplace market.
This article was written by Daphne Tomlinson, Senior Research Associate at Memoori.