Techworld

Cloud consultancy Cloud Sherpas makes pair of acquisitions

The deals for Innoveer Solutions and Navigis strengthen its Salesforce.com and ServiceNow practices

Cloud Sherpas is continuing its string of acquisitions of boutique consulting firms for cloud services, with the purchase of Innoveer Solutions and Navigis. Terms of the deals, which were announced Tuesday, were not disclosed.

Innoveer is focused on CRM (customer relationship management) software, with a particular emphasis on Salesforce.com. It has more than 750 customers and 2,000 successful implementations, according to Cloud Sherpas. The company also has European operations, giving Cloud Sherpas a physical presence in that region for the first time, Cloud Sherpas said.

Navigis, meanwhile, provides consulting and integration work for ServiceNow, a cloud-based IT help desk provider.

Cloud Sherpas is best known for its Salesforce.com and Google Apps-related services.

It has made a string of other acquisitions in the past several years, including last month's purchase of Cloudtrigger, a consultancy that also has close links to Salesforce.com. It also raised US$40 million in venture financing in December, a sign that investors expect the market for cloud integration services will heat up.

Cloud Sherpas faces competition on a number of fronts. Some comes from similar companies, such as Bluewolf and Appirio, that focus on cloud software. But large systems integrators such as Accenture and Deloitte have been building up practices around Salesforce.com and other major SaaS (software as a service) providers as well.

The market has even seen some consolidation on the part of SaaS vendors themselves, evidenced by Salesforce.com's 2011 acquisition of Model Metrics, one of the larger cloud systems integrators at the time.

There's no mystery behind all of this interest, given the fact that installing, customizing and maintaining enterprise software can cost much more over time than the license or subscription fees.

While SaaS vendors have long maintained that customers will save money and time compared to on-premises applications, the work done by companies such as Cloud Sherpas to configure and integrate SaaS applications still incurs a cost. These expenses, as well as the opportunities for the likes of Cloud Sherpas, could also rise as customers begin using more SaaS applications in conjunction as a best-of-breed suite.

Chris Kanaracus covers enterprise software and general technology breaking news for The IDG News Service. Chris' email address is Chris_Kanaracus@idg.com

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Tags: business issues, Internet-based applications and services, ServiceNow, Salesforce.com, software, Cloud Sherpas, accenture, internet, cloud computing, Mergers and acquisitions, Bluewolf, Deloitte, services
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