Private equity firm LDC in conjunction with Alastair Mills and Mike Ing have combined three businesses, DoubleEdge Professional Services, Foehn, and Metaphor IT to form Kerv. Following the £30 million merger, Kerv, will operate as a ‘customer-first, cloud-first’ managed services provider and has launched in the UK this week.
Cavell Group were engaged to assist Kerv’s founders and investors at the start of 2020. With an ambitious goal, of creating a technology provider capable of serving every aspect of enterprise business demand, the founders were looking to explore the market and identify areas of opportunity.
Investing to form a new technology business requires rigorous planning and clear strategy. Cavell group was engaged to provide vital information across various vectors such as market context and dynamics, opportunity identification, competitive benchmarking, and portfolio analysis. Mike Ing, Kerv’s Managing Director, explained how and why they looked to Cavell for insight:
Cavell provided a unique combination of technical subject matter expertise, industry experience and current market knowledge that delivered a hugely valuable cornerstone of our product strategy – Mike Ing, Kerv MD
Trend analysis is a key facet in any business’s market strategy and positioning, so understanding those has been vital to Kerv. One trend that has become apparent to Cavell Group over recent years, is the convergence of enterprise technology demands. It is this founding principle and opportunity that Kerv is aiming to leverage.
Enterprise organisations now have increasingly complex technological demands and finding partners that can assist across multiple areas has become increasingly difficult. Not only are enterprises looking for expertise in each technology area, they are also looking for those partners who can integrate and manage different facets of their technology stack to optimise their efficiency in any given market. By combining several innovative businesses in this way Kerv is now able to offer expertise in every area of technology that enterprises require: line of business applications, communications, and infrastructure.
Cavell utilised its extensive research and nuanced understanding of the various cloud communications markets to reaffirm Kerv’s market opportunity. With cloud penetration rates growing in the group’s core geographical markets it was clear that a strong cloud native communications platform would be a key asset to any converged technology provider.
Foehn with its communications expertise and innovative UCaaS platform, Voxivo, provided that key communications asset and also fulfilled another key area with its native contact centre solution and through its pre-existing CCaaS partnerships. This is now a critical consideration as Cavell Group’s research shows that customer engagement provision now permeates every level of enterprise technology platform selection.
An ongoing development within the communication and technology markets is the rising popularity of Microsoft Teams. With around 7 million Teams users in the UK the opportunity for engagement is vast. Metaphor IT’s expertise in the Microsoft productivity stack, and Microsoft 365, provides the group with technical assets that will enable it to assist the growing number of enterprises looking to utilise Teams as their default communication and collaboration tool. Cavell Group’s analysis of the Teams opportunity demonstrates increasing engagement by service providers, so having the correct expertise and positioning in this space is important to ensure success in one of the most fast-moving, crowded technology sectors.
Arguably though Metaphor IT’s expertise within Azure is the most vital element of the Microsoft technology stack. As the cloudification of technology continues business are looking to leverage public cloud models and the integration and functional capabilities of Azure make it a vital cloud infrastructure tool for any technology service provider. Security expertise and in-depth knowledge of Azure Sentinel, Microsoft’s security analytics platform, will provide Kerv’s enterprise customers with the reassurance that the new company will be able to meet the number one enterprise technology consideration – identified by Cavell Group.
These areas of specialisation combined with internal networking experience, and also additional knowledge assets from DoubleEdge Professional Services, create a holistic technology provider able to cater for an enterprise organisations entire technology estate.
The vision shown by Kerv’s founders and investors aims to capitalise on a growing market opportunity for holistic technology providers. Cavell’s insight across various areas helped to refine and reaffirm assumptions about Kerv’s market positioning, competitive strategy, and portfolio suitability.