Enterprise tech start-ups are on fire. Every day it seems there's at least one mega financing in a company that's taking on the incumbents with a faster and more efficient, sleeker and more cost-effective solution.
Just this week, data analytics start-up Alteryx raised $60 million and high-performance storage provider SolidFire reeled in $82 million. It's a race to acquire customers and, in many instances, grow at the expense of profitability. And it's being funded by an exuberant venture capital community.
Bob Morse has chosen not to play that game. After spending 12 years investing in technology companies at private equity firm Oak Hill Capital, Morse noticed a corner of the business software market that remains largely ignored by the popular bankrollers. He started Strattam Capital last year and is raising $350 million fund to go after those deals.
Rather than seeking out the next big disruptive force that's doubling revenue every year and aiming to take down Oracle or IBM, Strattam is looking for lower-profile software companies that have stayed away from traditional venture capital and stuck with more conservative growth rates.
Morse said that by providing some fresh capital and professional guidance, Strattam can help companies that have been growing at 10 to 15 percent a year increase that to 20 to 25 percent. And he can help get them on the radar of big tech companies that have noticeable gaps in their product suite.
Strattam's first deal, which closed last week, was for a majority stake in Doxim, a 14-year-old Toronto-based company that sells electronic document management tools to financial firms. Prior to meeting Strattam, Doxim had raised a total of $500,000 in outside funding in 2006. With that, the company reached $10 million in annual revenue, turned a profit and hired almost 100 employees.
"I don't have anything in my plan that's 100 percent growth every year," said Chris Rasmussen, Doxim's founder and chief executive officer. "I've been able to guide the company from the home office in the basement of my house to where we are today by making short, medium and long-term decisions. Now I've got a few more veterans on my board."