ACCEO Solutions expands smaller retail footprint with Multipost acquisition

The Québec-based solution provider continues its strategic acquisitions by buying Markham ON-based Multipost, which makes POS software for smaller retailers. ACCEO also indicated that more acquisitions are coming in the next few weeks.

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Gilles Létourneau, ACCEO Solutions’ president and CEO

ACCEO Solutions, a Montréal-based solution provider which is strong throughout Québec, but has also been strengthening its presence across Canada and in the United States, has announced the acquisition of Multipost, a Markham ON-based firm which makes point-of-sale (POS) solutions for smaller retailers, in specialized sectors, notably hardware.

Terms of the deal were not announced, although Gilles Létourneau, ACCEO Solutions’ president and CEO, said that it was under five million dollars.

ACCEO, which began in 1988 as an integrator of accounting and financial software, has been steadily expanding its practice areas and physical presence over the last decade. Their solutions and consulting now include the payment industry, manufacturing, retail, and the travel industry.

“We have a very strong presence in Québec, but we are also growing across Canada, with an office in Winnipeg and now two in Toronto,” Létourneau said. “We are continuing to grow outside Québec, and that is our strategy, to grow much faster outside Québec than inside. About 10 per cent of our business today is in the United States, mainly in payment, but we want to acquire some businesses in the eastern part of the U.S. and expand further.” The belated American move to the chip card is expected to help ACCEO’s business there significantly, and they have signed some big retail customers like Gap in the last few months.

ACCEO is doing over $20,000,000 in business today in the retail sector, but Létourneau said this is definitely a vertical they are looking to grow, and the Multipost deal is a key part of that.

“We are focused on ‘fast retail’ – sectors like groceries and drugstores,” Létourneau said. “We are already in the hardware store market here too, but the Multipost solution will cover smaller stores where we don’t have a presence today. As well as larger hardware retailers like Home Hardware and RONA, there are many smaller stores, and the solution we already had for hardware was too big for them. This will help us sign those companies where our solution has been too big.”

Multipost’s SmartVendor software covers most of the needs of a small store, and links with other accounting systems, including ACCEO’s own Acomba accounting software, which addresses this market.

“The Multipost solution is for stores starting with one POS device, and covers up to 3-5 POS devices,” Létourneau said. “They have 2700 customers, and an average of 1.7 POS devices per store.”

In addition to their software, Multipost was already selling their customers everything they needed for a complete solution, including hardware.

“The small stores that they sell to don’t have IT departments,” Létourneau said. “They need a one stop shop. The big box stores buy their own equipment, but for small stores, you sell everything.”

ACCEO expects to see strong synergies from the acquisition.

“Multipost will now have the ability to be linked our Tender Retail payment solution, as well as our accounting and business intelligence solutions,” Létourneau said. “Our sales reps [approximately 10 for the hardware market] will also now be selling Multipost. So we will both expand their business and sell more of our technology solutions. We also expect that this will help grow a bigger presence outside Quebec.”

All of the staff from Multipost will be coming to ACCEO except the former owner, who turned 70, wanted to retire, and can now do so while leaving his old business in safe hands. The Markham facility will not only remain, but will be expanded.

“Some of our Montréal business will move there because they are will organized for shipping other equipment,” Létourneau said.

Finally, Létourneau indicated that ACCEO’s aggressive acquisition strategy will continue.

“We will have some more acquisitions by the end of the month,” he said.

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