Citrix ramps up Canadian services org with TH Consultants purchase

Todd Hsu, now director of consulting services for Canada at Citrix.

Todd Hsu, now director of consulting services for Canada at Citrix.

SAN FRANCISCO – Citrix Systems is ramping up its services organization in Canada with its purchase of a longtime partner, TH Consultants out of Montreal.

The software company formally announced the purchase, which closed April 24, at its Citrix Summit partner conference her Tuesday. Because TH was privately held, terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Hector Lima, vice president of Americas field services, said the company snapped up THC to build capacity for its enterprise-focused services in Canada. Although the Canadian services business has been flat year-over-year, it’s not been because of a lack of opportunities, but rather, limited resources to meet those opportunities.

With the 10 TH Consultants staffers on board, the company will now have 15 consultants in Canada, will have its first formal presence in Quebec, and will be able to provide a lot more architecture and design services to enterprise customers in Eastern Canada.

For Todd Hsu, founder of TH Consultants and now director of consulting services for Canada at Citrix, being purchased by Citrix provides a validation of his company’s work for the vendor. Citrix was by far the biggest vendor for THC since its debut in 1997, representing north of 80 per cent of its business.

“We’ve been doing all of these things already [for Citrix] without really collecting a paycheque,” Hsu quipped, adding that TH has followed Citrix through its evolution from server computing to virtualization over the last decade and a half. “We really grew a deep affection for the company and to its technology.”

The acquisition is the first services buy for Citrix since it originally built up its consulting services business in 2000 through the purchase of Miami-based Innovex Group. Since then, the company has grown its services organically, and while Lima said it has built “a stable and predictable” recruitment engine for services professionals Stateside, that isn’t necessarily the case in Canada or other geographies. Lima said the services organization will be looking at making “targeted acquisitions” of smaller services organizations going forward.

“TH Consultants really fits our criteria – it’s a manageable size for us, they specialize in services and in Citrix services in particular,” Lima said. “We’re not looking to acquire demand, we’re looking to create capacity.”

Todd and his team will now manage the company’s services organization in Eastern Canada and the federal government, as well as top enterprise customers in Toronto.

Lima said that while much of THC’s project work was wrapped up prior to the acquisition, it’s now going through the process of figuring out what to do with its recurring revenue customers, many of whom don’t fit in with Citrix services’ approach on early-stage design and architecture opportunities. Much of that business may be turned over to appropriate Citrix partners, Lima suggested.

As an independent, TH Consultants had strong connections to many of the major Citrix partners, Hsu said. And that’s likely to continue, especially given that the services business tends to work closely with solution providers, both subcontracting work to the channel and handing its early analysis, design and piloting work to the partner of a customer’s choice for procurement, implementation and ongoing support. It’s a familiar role for Hsu.

“We have a unique relationship with the local competition,” Hsu said. “When everyone thinks of of me, thy think of Citrix. And when they think of Citrix, they think of me. The Metafores, the Bells, the Softchoices of the world, when they have a Citrix problem, they call us. We were already there to help everyone, and although our name badge is changing, that remains the same. Just now, instead of 10 people, we’re 150 strong [in the North American Citrix consulting business.]”