Waterloo, Ont.-based Auvik Networks Inc. has secured a $250-million investment from Great Hill Partners, a growth-focused private-equity firm.
Auvik’s cloud-based software helps businesses manage their IT networks. The company has more than 200 employees, and manages about four million devices on more than 50,000 networks. It was founded in 2011 by Auvik’s chief executive officer Marc Morin, along with former BlackBerry chief technology officer David Yach and Alex Hoff, all University of Waterloo alumni.
Boston-based GHP took an undisclosed equity stake in return for its investment, which Mr. Morin said will go toward expanding into new markets and building out its product offering.
“Going forward, it’s zooming out from our perspective on IT managed service providers to anyone that has a network,” Mr. Morin said. “Geographically, much of our market today is in North America mostly, in the U.S. and there’s networks around the world.”
Before GHP’s investment, Auvik had raised $41-million from venture funds, including Celtic House Venture Partners, OpenView Venture Partners and Rho Capital Partners.
“Auvik has a truly innovative approach to ITOps [IT operations] and has developed powerful software that IT teams not only enjoy using, but is essential to their operations,” Drew Loucks, a managing director at GHP, said in a press release. “We believe the team is well-positioned to capture a significant portion of the evolving market moving forward.”
In January, The Globe and Mail reported the company was considering going public. Mr. Morin said in an interview this week that taking a private investment was the best option for Auvik. He said the funds from GHP will help Auvik make strategic acquisitions.
“We plan on acquiring not only some technology and products, but also market presence,” he said. “We needed the right financial partner to help accelerate that motion going forward … and certainly Great Hill, being a growth-oriented sort of ambassador, really was important for us.”
The new capital, he said, will allow the company to consider “make-versus-buy” decisions in a way that they could not before, and enter new markets without starting from scratch.
“Do we start from zero and hire people, or do we just buy a company that gets us in that market?”
Because of the pandemic, Auvik no longer belongs to any one market. The company has permanently gone fully remote, with staff in North America and Europe. Mr. Morin said the company has held steady throughout the pandemic, after going through a few tough months at the beginning.
“Our business did take a little bit of a hit during the bulk of April and May of last year, where, frankly, everyone was conserving cash, no one was spending anything,” he said, adding that most of its customers weren’t hit too hard financially.
“The COVID thing, when we look back now, it’s like a cross breeze. It didn’t accelerate the business, but didn’t really dramatically lower it other than a few points for a few months. We’ve been fortunate.”
Mr. Morin said he sees a clear path to continue growing as cloud computing and the software-as-a-service business model changes the nature of corporate IT.
“That’s a huge opportunity for us to position the company for that new IT environment and we’re in that transition, so we’re well-positioned for that and expect to dominate in that space.”
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