Services management developer Autotask has acquired VARstreet, and its e-commerce tools, to create a unified platform where solution providers can create a quoting and billing mechanism for both their products and services offerings, according to Bob Godgart, founder and CEO of Autotask.
"One of the things we tried to do last year was look at the whole market and the product offering we had. We felt that Autotask was strong on the services side but we needed to be stronger on the product side," Godgart said. "It's a pretty exciting thing. We can handle both product and service side now."
The deal has already closed and Autotask has integrated VARstreet into Autotask's product line. The VARstreet brand will remain and solution providers can still buy and use the VARstreet e-commerce platform without needing Autotask's services platform, Godgart said.
Autotask made its first acquisition after hearing from its own customers that they had gotten out of the products business in part because of the time and resources needed to take and process orders, Godgart said. He believes VARstreet's solution will alleviate that pain and get more MSPs back into the products game.
VARStreet was founded in 1999 and counts more than 400 resellers serving 100,000 corporate, federal, state, and local government end customers with its XC E-Commerce Platform.
"They said the time and energy to push through an order, they lost money on every deal. With the latest version of VARstreet, it has advanced quoting technology and downloaded [product pricing and availability] from 18 different distributors. VARs can do e-sourcing, find the best price and where it's available," Godgart said. "With most distributors you can do an electronic order, track and drop ship right to the customers. It's a no-touch order from the store through delivery for the customer. The VAR won't touch it but they can make some more money on it."
Autotask had little customer overlap with VARstreet, which allows for significant cross-selling opportunities too, Godgart said. Autotask plans to make a VARstreet offering for the SMB reseller market, starting at $99 per month for quoting capability. VARstreet traditionally has focused on larger, higher-volume VARs, Godgart said.
"It's really a case of one plus one equals four. All the customers we've talked to are very excited," he said.