On January 17, Telesoft announced it has hired Tamara Saunders and Don Luby as Chief Financial Officer and Senior Vice President of Sales, respectively. Telesoft also announced the appointment of Charlotte Yates to Telesoft’s board of directors. The appointments represent Telesoft’s first major executive talent change since September 2016, when Telesoft was acquired by private equity firm, Sumeru Equity Partners, after which Sumeru retained much of Telesoft’s existing management team. At the time, Blue Hill commented that an opportunity existed for greater consolidation and investment in the Technology Expense Management (TEM) market in the near term.
Charlotte Yates has over 30 years of experience serving in leadership and advisory roles for technology and telecommunications companies. Most notably, Yates co-founded and served as CEO at Telwares, a provider of network and IT advisory and cost management services which had previously rolled up TSL, Digital Reliance, MSS*Group, and QuantumShift in a TEM market rollup through the 2000s. In March 2011, Tangoe acquired Telwares’ Telecom Expense Management business, including its invoice management, call accounting, and mobile device management operations.
Don Luby is a veteran in the Technology Expense Management space with over 30 years of experience, having served most recently as VP of Sales at Tangoe after being acquired through Tangoe’s acquisition of IBM’s Rivermine TEM business in May 2015. Prior to Tangoe, Luby’s previous experience included stints at IBM, Emptoris, and HP.
Rivermine’s high degree of customization enabled Luby to pursue some unique solutions-driven sales opportunities in his role at Rivermine. Blue Hill notes that Luby’s experience may provide a new perspective in Telesoft’s go-to-market strategy in helping Telesoft to highlight opportunities for enterprise-specific customizations.
Tamara Saunders joins the firm after more than 20 years of experience in telecommunications public accounting and financial roles, having most recently served as CFO of Telesphere and VP of Finance at Vonage, which acquired Telesphere in 2014.
Blue Hill notes that it is interesting that Telesoft is acquiring talent from Tangoe, and hints that the consolidation and shifting market leadership positions in the TEM market are continuing trends, especially as Tangoe is poised to potentially undergo additional transformation. Key executive talent continues to change hands and large global vendors face both outside investment and the potential for additional consolidation in the near future. With this move, Telesoft joins the race for TEM market leadership along with fellow private equity-funded firms Calero and Asentinel, as well as fast-growing independent firms such as Cass Information Systems and Cimpl, and mobility managed service firms with strong TEM capabilities such as MOBI and Mobichord.
Just last week, Blue Hill covered Tangoe’s announcement made on January 3, 2017 that the company has received two non-binding acquisition proposals: one from Marlin Equity Partners, and the other a joint proposal from Clearlake Capital Group and Vector Capital Management. Both Clearlake and Marlin own large global TEM players: Calero and Asentinel, respectively.
Blue Hill has previously profiled Telesoft, alongside Calero, Asentinel, and Tangoe, as key Technology Expense Management (TEM) vendors equipped to manage TEM on a global scale. In particular, Blue Hill has highlighted Telesoft’s flexible, single-platform solution, as well as the company’s ownership and business continuity – remaining owner/operator run with over 30 years in business – as key differentiators for the company.
The TEM market is clearly attracting attention, not only from outside investors but also from seasoned veterans in the space seeking new opportunities with large global players. Since our coverage of the global TEM landscape in September 2016, the market has already undergone several significant changes and investments in just these few months. This makes our jobs at Blue Hill exciting (and easy!) as new opportunities to provide coverage and guidance continue to emerge.