Sphera’s Acquisition Of Rivo Marks The First Step In Its Journey Back To Innovation

On April 6th, 2017, Chicago-based Sphera Solutions – a firm established when Genstar Capital bought out the OE & RM assets from IHS - announced the acquisition of UK-based safety and risk software provider Rivo Software. This is the first move Sphera has made since its inception in September 2016 and creates a 600-employee EHS software giant with offices in the US, UK, Australia, Canada, France, Holland, UAE and India. Financial details of the deal were not disclosed.

The rationale for the acquisition is three-fold. Firstly, Rivo’s SaaS-based architecture and robust mobile functionality provide Sphera with a platform which it can use to sell to the mid-market and core enterprise segments up to $5 billion in revenue. Secondly, Rivo’s focus on incident management and personnel safety compliments Sphera’s focus on product stewardship and process safety. Thirdly Rivo’s presence in UK gives Sphera a boost to its global footprint (the acquisition shifts Sphera’s North American revenues from 70% of the total to 64%). Overall, the goal of bringing in Rivo’s software is to help move Sphera closer to their strategic vison of providing modular, cloud-oriented EHS software that can cater to all corners of the EHS industry and do so for large enterprises and the mid-market alike.

This move makes a lot of sense. Verdantix research shows that 81% of EHS professionals identify the ability of a platform to cover all EHS workflows as ‘very important’ or ‘important’, and 63% believe the same to be true for mobile app functionality. The acquisition certainly pushes Sphera in the right direction to take advantage of emerging customer demands and improve its competitive position. Sphera’s new management team is moving quickly to show customers and partners that the independent business is now on a new trajectory. Verdantix predicted that 2017 would be the year that the North American “grey squirrels” invaded the territory of the European “red squirrels”. We anticipate more trans-Atlantic deals now that Sphera has fired the starting gun.

To understand how the EHStech landscape is evolving come to the fourth annual Verdantix EHS Summit “Achieving EH&S Excellence With Innovative Technologies” taking place at the JW Marriott in Houston, May 15-17.