Argano Continues Solution Provider Acquisition Spree With Salesforce Partner aMind
Wade Tyler Millward
“The idea is a new kind of service model, this joiner model, to bring these companies together on a platform where they can share what‘s important, deliver great services and do it at breadth and scale without disrupting them,” Argano Group CEO Harry ‘Chip’ Register tells CRN in an interview. “When they go together as Argano, then they can access real transformation together as a group, where they wouldn’t have that opportunity before.”
Private equity-backed Argano continues its goal of creating a comprehensive suite of digital transformation services through the purchase of channel partners while leaving them individual brand and culture identities. On Wednesday, Argano announced its sixth acquisition in about a year, buying up Alamo, Calif.-based Salesforce partner aMind Solutions.
With aMind, the Plano, Texas-based Argano adds to its offerings configure, price, quote and billing applications for sales, partners, field service and e-commerce channels. But instead of integrating all its subsidiaries under the Argano name, the company has decided to pursue a strategy of cross- and co-selling goods among the subsidiaries, Argano Group CEO Harry “Chip” Register told CRN in an interview.
“The idea is a new kind of service model, this joiner model, to bring these companies together on a platform where they can share what‘s important, deliver great services and do it at breadth and scale without disrupting them,” Register said. “When they go together as Argano, then they can access real transformation together as a group, where they wouldn’t have that opportunity before.”
Financial terms for the aMind deal were not disclosed.
aMind is the third Salesforce partner Argano has purchased during this acquisition strategy. Argano and its Dallas-based private equity backer, Trinity Hunt Partners, announced the company’s launch in a statement in May.
It bought Salesforce partner United Virtualities, which offers business-to-customer commerce services, and renamed the company ArganoUV. United Virtualities was founded in 2009. ArganoUV is based in New York.
Argano previously bought Keste, an Oracle and Salesforce partner that offers business-to-business (B2B) commerce-to-cash services and renamed the company ArganoKeste. Keste was founded in 2004.
In June, Sri Ayyeppen, Keste co-founder, president and chief technology officer, became chief revenue officer of Argano, with the goal of finding cross- and co-selling opportunities among the different subsidiaries.
“Together, we can deliver very broad, very large Salesforce implementations all the way from commerce back,” Register said.
Argano’s other companies include Arlington, Texas-based Oracle partner InterRel, which offers enterprise performance management (EPM) and business intelligence (BI) software. The company, founded in 1997, was renamed ArganoInterRel.
Argano bought Irvine, Calif.-based Microsoft partner Arbela Technologies for enterprise resource planning (ERP), customer relationship management (CRM) and analytics services.
Arbela was previously a member of CRN”s 2019 Next-Gen 250 list.
And Argano bought Decatur, Ga.-based SAP partner SCMO2 for supply chain planning and transformation capabilities. SCMO2 was founded in 2003. Arbela and SCMO2 have retained their names. Both acquisitions were announced in June.
Its latest acquisition, aMind, was founded in 2005. Its 65 employees will bring Argano to a total of 750. aMind President Billy Hunt will stay on.
Register, Argano’s group CEO, expects three more acquisitions this year, bringing the total of acquisitions to nine and the total employee count to between 1,000 and 1,500. He said the company also has 900 clients with little overlap among the different subsidiaries.
He assesses potential purchases based on the technology offered and geographical presence. And he’s interested in solution providers in cloud migration, managed services and consulting and technology mapping.
“Some pretty big pillars are starting to form in our capabilities where you‘re talking about $100-plus million dollar businesses in different areas,” he said.
Argano’s organic growth has also been “very strong,” Register said. Customers include Fortune 100 companies and ones with between $500 million and $2 billion in sales. All Argano companies grew during the pandemic and the company has expertise in verticals including financial services, health care, retail, distribution and manufacturing.
“It accelerated the need for speed of change because so much more is being done differently,” he said.
Before leading Argano, Register held executive roles at digital consulting firm Publicis.Sapient and Sapient before its $3.7 billion acquisition, according to his LinkedIn. He left the 19,000-employee, 100-office Publicis.Sapient in 2017 with the title of co-CEO.
“I would never be a part of a big generalized firm again,” Register said. “I fundamentally don‘t believe in the model. The idea here (at Argano) is, these aren’t generalists, these are specialty firms that collaborate.”
He said Argano isn’t concerned with the large number of firms in the digital transformation space, especially with upper midmarket customers.
“We think it‘s massively uncompetitive because the really big guys have lost a lot of muscle in that space, which is why the partners on the Argano platform beat them consistently in that spot,” he said.