Who are you and what is your job?
I am the Co-founder and CEO of SuperOps.ai. SuperOps.ai is a unified PSA-RMM platform for modern MSPs. Our goal is to make the lives and work of MSPs simpler, predictable and better, and support their growth with our intuitive and easy-to-use unified platform.
What is your business and what do you do within the MSP space?
SuperOps.ai was founded in 2020 to help MSPs deliver IT support to their clients in a streamlined and more efficient manner. MSPs were struggling with multiple tools, opaque and unethical contracts, complicated pricing, lack of technical advancements and unhelpful support from legacy vendors.
We launched with a goal to change all this. SuperOps.ai is a unified PSA-RMM platform with built in IT documentation and project management. MSPs do not need multiple tools, they can use just SuperOps.ai. We have clear and transparent pricing, which is publicly shown on our website – what you see is what you get. We are also cloud native and AI-ready. We have started with Automations, but our platform is AI-capable. We already have built-in Intelligent Alerting that helps MSPs receive only important alerts. However, AI requires large quantities of data to get the model right and this takes time to build. But, the older players in the PSA & RMM space are mostly from the on-premise era and are not even ready for AI.
What we are most proud of is how we work closely with MSPs to build our product, so it closely aligns with the ambitions of MSPs. We co-built our product with over 150 MSPs and our roadmap is publicly available, with MSPs able to vote on what features they want to see added.
How do you see M&A activity within the MSP industry right now?
M&A activity in the MSP space was at an all-time high in 2021 and 2022, with over x1000 M&A deals this year. In my view consolidation will continue in 2023 as well. There are a few factors contributing to this:
– Quite a significant number of MSPs are very small operations. Many of them, after they reach a certain maturity, want to be a part of a larger operation and hence look for an acquirer – a safe landing. This has been the case for a long time. But we see an uptake in recent years, driven by the economic uncertainty.
– The Covid-19 pandemic’s contributing effect cannot be ruled out. It had led to an increase in demand for IT support services and growth for nimble MSPs. In a quest for faster growth, to expand geographically and to acquire complementary skill sets or specialised skill sets, MSPs are opting for mergers or acquihires. This increased demand for MSP’s services has attracted the attention of private equity players, who have funded many of the MSP M&As in 2021 and 2022. There have also been cases where PE firms have acquired one MSP and used that acquisition to acquire more MSPs and create a larger operation and compete better.
What advice would you give to MSP owners that are looking to plan for an exit?
The focus should be to build a great business. If you have good people, strong technical skill sets, good clients, processes are defined and streamlined and the books are clear, then you have a good business. And, others will be keen to acquire a good business.
When you reach the point of discussions for an acquisition or an exit, as a business owner, you need to think for the company – what’s the value everyone gets out of the deal? Also, you need to think about what the buyer is acquiring your business for. Is it for the people, the clients or the business? You should keep the well-being of your clients and employees in mind. It shouldn’t happen that your business gets acquired and gets irrelevant. If you are intending to continue to be a part of the business even after the acquisition, then the deal structure becomes important. If you want to say in the business then a cash deal isn’t enough; you will need to have significant ownership, so you have a say in the running of the merged entity.
Right now, the market is evolving at a rapid pace. Many new MSPs are entering the industry. While there is macroeconomic uncertainty and cost cutting, it is also true that demand for IT support services is also on the rise. This is a good time to acquire but it is also a good time to exit. Unless you get a significant valuation, now may not be the right time to sell. Don’t make the mistake of underselling, just because of tough market conditions.
How can your product support MSP owners building their MSP, that will ultimately support an exit?
As I have said in the previous answer, the focus should be on building a strong MSP business that is efficient, has strong processes, has a good team and happy clients. Our goal at SuperOps.ai is to enable MSPs to achieve this.
SuperOps.ai offers a unified PSA-RMM platform that is built for the modern MSP. MSPs, traditionally, have had to struggle with multiple tools – over 8 on an average – to get their everyday work done. With SuperOps.ai they don’t just manage their entire operations, but also make it more efficient and profitable. Our product is highly intuitive – everything an MSP technician needs is just a click or two away. We understand how an MSP works and we have built SuperOps.ai to match their requirements.
For instance, with our asset-linked ticketing, the technician can view the asset details and seamlessly move to managing the asset or solving the problem associated with the asset right from the ticket. Our quote management allows you to create a quote within our PSA. Clients get to approve or reject the quote through the portal or via a public link and they can add comments too. We have also enabled version history, so you can revise the same quote and not lose the previous versions. Our Intelligent Alerting surfaces only the truly important alerts, so your technicians are not bogged down by false alerts or ones that don’t matter.
What all this results in is a much more efficient MSP business – faster resolution of issues and just a streamlined workflow translates to more time for your techs to provide better service to existing clients and also handle more customers.
Also, you are not spending on multiple tools. You can invest these savings back into your business and employees.
Considering the importance of MRR, MSPs need to focus on services that ensure clients will opt for long-term recurring contracts. With SuperOps.ai’s RMM, MSPs can automatically remediate issues to instantly raise tickets in response to identified problems. This puts MSPs on the front foot with issue resolution, and establishes proactive predictability to increase client confidence and nurture smaller, break-fix clients into long-lasting, sustainable partners.
To add value to your MSP through your improving your tech stack, process and documentation you can checkout www.superops.ai