Toronto-based Charon has offices across the country, but didn’t have much of a foothold in Quebec until now. Veritech is focused almost solely on that province, so it was an ideal acquisition target, according to Charon president and CEO David Fung.
The buyout will almost double the number of staff Charon has in Quebec, bringing the total number of employees to 20. It will also allow the company to tap the largely unexplored SMB market, since it will inherit Veritech’s 300-strong client base.
“”We don’t really have that much (small business), especially in Quebec,”” said Fung. “”We have more medium and medium-large enterprises. Quite frankly, our ASP/MSP model would fit into the small-medium size as well, because they may not have the resources to do the managed service provider piece or the hosting piece.””
Veritech has maintained its Montreal operation for more than 22 years, according to the company’s former president Michel Girard, who has now taken on the role of vice-president of the Quebec region for Charon. The standard operating procedure for Veritech has been to sell an IT infrastructure to a small or medium-sized company, then manage it for them, he explained. The approach marks a departure for Charon, which adds technology to larger companies with an existing infrastrucure in place.
“”Typically, it’s a project-oriented approach,”” said Girard. “”This appeals to medium to large companies. We’re more service-oriented, so we’ll take over the IT department for the customer. Typically, our customers don’t have IT departments.””
“”Michel and I have the same vision about going after the SMB market,”” said Fung. “”We find that we both share the same goals and objectives in the respective companies. A lot of the stuff that they do, we do. But some of the stuff we do, they don’t do. We both are Citrix, but we do a lot more security, so that would help his customers as well.””
Girard estimates that there are more than 15,000 small and medium-sized businesses in Quebec alone.
He added that his former company has actively pursued its own R&D, particularly in IP telephony and in the mobility market. “”Some of (the R&D) will help with (Charon’s) national business, some of it is more for the local region,”” said Girard. “”The fact that we have that twist in our offering makes us more unique to the market.””
Charon’s Quebec employees moved into the Veritech Montreal facility last week. The office will be running on Charon’s IT systems within two weeks. Any remaining integration issues should be resolved by July, said Girard.