Sage, the Newcastle headquartered FTSE 100 accountancy software company has announced the acquisition of a fast growth HR software company, Fairsail, to add to enterprise offerings for mid-sized businesses.
Sage is currently a minority shareholder in Fairsail’s global cloud human capital management (HCM) and people management system. The acquisition will see Sage take full ownership of Fairsail, building on a shared product, Sage People, launched last year. Sage People extends Fairsail’s functionality to include payroll, and form part of Sage’s vision for a “golden triangle”, offering customers a single cloud solution to manage people and payroll, payments and accounting.
Fairsail’s growth has been phenomenal since its launch in 2009. In 2016, its annual revenues hit £10 million, up from £1 million in 2013, while it doubled its workforce to 135 employees.
It is now the fastest growing tech scale-up in the UK, and recently made the Sunday Times Hiscox Tech Track. The company also expanded its US operations in 2016 by opening of an additional office in Chicago.
Fairsail won 60 new customers last year, including PaddyPower Betfair, HMD Global, Matchtech, Mitsui, Quest Software, Redflex Traffic Systems, Sage, Trustpilot and Tradeshift. According to Fairsail CEO Adam Hale, the platform has a 98 per cent renewal rate.
Hale believes Sage’s acquisition will catalyse the company’s growth even further. “Our ambition is to be the global leader for HCM and people solutions in the mid-market. The combination of Fairsail with Sage turbocharges that goal,” he said.
“Our tremendous growth over the past year is down to the faith placed in our amazing employees and market-leading technology by highly ambitious mid-sized companies. It’s great to work with so many organisations that recognise the vital importance of the HR function and its ability to help them truly understand their people.”
For Hale, the effective management of people and HR processes crosses borders, cultural divides and different legislative landscapes, which explains the company’s expansive growth around the world. Today, there are more than 120,000 Fairsail users in over 130 countries.
Sage CEO Stephen Kelly believes this acquisition will accelerate the software company’s people offering. “We have been unequivocal about giving growing and ambitious businesses a real-time, frictionless way to manage their entire businesses in the cloud, to create an environment of ‘invisible admin’. This integrates everything from talent acquisition to people analytics in one online system – helping businesses in recruiting, engaging and retaining top talent.”
The combined portfolio provides attractive growth opportunities, particularly through new customer acquisition internationally, and cross-sell to the combined customer base. The acquisition will build on Sage’s existing partnership with Salesforce.