VC Firm Acquiring Intermedia, A Leading Cloud Communications Services Provider


Intermedia.net Inc., a provider of hosted Microsoft Exchange and other communications services for small and mid-size businesses, is being acquired by venture capital firm Oak Hill Capital Partners for an undisclosed sum.

Intermedia has some 6,800 channel partners who private-label the company's services and account for more than half of its sales.

Oak Hill and Intermedia said Thursday that they have signed a definitive agreement for Oak Hill to acquire privately held Intermedia and they expect to close the deal by the end of June.

The companies also said that Intermedia CEO Serguei Sofinski, who joined the company in 1998 and has served as CEO since 2006, will leave the company and is being replaced by Phil Koen, previously CEO of Savvis Inc., another provider of managed hosting and cloud computing services.

"As a pioneer and now significant player in cloud-based IT services, Intermedia has tremendous potential for further growth by delivering more cost-effective solutions to companies whose on-premise IT is moving to the cloud," Koen said in a statement. "We intend to build Intermedia into a leading provider of a broad suite of cloud services to SMBs and the channels that serve them, with Microsoft Exchange email as the core service."

New York-based Intermedia is a Microsoft Gold Partner whose primary business is hosting Microsoft's Exchange e-mail system. As of April 30 the company managed some 320,000 premium Exchange mailboxes. The company has credited much of its rapid growth to its Private Label Partner Program, which has more than 6,800 global channel partners who account for a majority of the company's sales.

The company also provides other hosted communications services, including hosting Microsoft SharePoint and Office Communications Server. Earlier this year it launched hosted PBX and e-mail encryption services.

"We are proud to have built this company from a startup to a profitable, major player in the IT hosting industry, with no outside investments. We are now the leading independent provider in a rapidly growing market," said Michael Choupak, the founder and majority shareholder of Intermedia, in a statement. "It is very exciting to see Intermedia take this important step to the next level as it aligns itself with great partners to drive further growth."

"We are still in the early stages of a dramatic shift in IT from the corporate premise to the cloud, and Intermedia is in an ideal position to accelerate this shift," said Robert Morse, a Partner at Oak Hill Capital, in a statement. "We look forward to working with Phil Koen and the rest of the management team to drive Intermedia’s next stage of growth."