Birmingham, Ala. (May 12, 2015) – Founders Investment Banking, LLC (“Founders”) is pleased to announce that SmarterServices, LLC has completed a majority recapitalization with Main Line Equity Partners (“Main Line”), a Philadelphia-based private equity firm that invests in lower middle market software and technology-enabled companies. SmarterServices is an education technology company based in Alabama that provides data-driven eLearning applications to K-12 schools, colleges, and universities. Founded in 2002 by Dr. Mac Adkins, SmarterServices has become one of the foremost providers of distance learning solutions and serves nearly 600 institutions across the United States. The company’s flagship product, SmarterMeasure™, is the leading non-cognitive readiness indicator which assesses and quantifies a learner’s preparedness to study online and/or in a technology-rich environment.
“Our mission has always been to identify common problems within distance education programs and address these issues through a suite of robust and yet user-friendly solutions,” stated Dr. Mac Adkins, founder and president of SmarterServices. “While education is an ever-evolving industry, we have made significant progress over the last 13 years in alleviating key pain points for our customers. Main Line is much more than a growth capital resource – the firm brings operational expertise, a wealth of knowledge of the markets we serve, and an opportunity to leverage synergies across its portfolio. This is an exciting partnership that will allow us to expedite the execution of our product roadmap ultimately benefitting the institutional staff and students we serve.”
“From a technology perspective, we are excited to leverage Main Line’s expertise and resources to help expand our technology team,” stated Jason Fill, chief technology officer of SmarterServices. “By adding talent in a few key areas, we will be in a great position to advance the capabilities of our products while continuing to successfully service a growing customer base.”
“The people and technology behind SmarterServices makes them ready to take the next step in a high-demand area of the education market,” said Chris Randazzo, managing partner at Main Line Equity Partners. “Their combination of market knowledge, entrepreneurial spirit, and educational experience truly make their clients smarter.”
The principals of Founders acted as the exclusive advisor to SmarterServices in the transaction. “With Mac’s background in the higher education space, SmarterServices has a unique ability to understand its customers and anticipate future requirements,” stated Zane Tarence, managing director of Founders’ Software and Internet Practice. “We’re thrilled that SmarterServices has found the right partner to assist them in this next phase of growth. Chris and the Main Line team have an excellent track record of building successful companies. They did a tremendous job communicating their expertise and familiarity with the space. Having advised on several EdTech transactions over the past year, we are especially excited to see what the future holds for this company as it serves a growing segment of the education sector.”
Founders recently advised on another transaction in the EdTech space. To learn more about GradesFirst’s strategic sale to The Advisory Board Company, click here.
SmarterServices™ offers a suite of eLearning applications that empower nearly 600 educational institutions—K-12 schools, colleges, universities—to organize and analyze relevant data about students, teachers, employees, and curriculum. Our data-driven solutions include online student readiness assessments, exam proctoring management, and faculty recruiting. As a result, clients can more intelligently form strategic plans, maximize efficiency, and foster formative learning. Since 2002, over 3 million students have benefited from SmarterServices.
About Main Line Equity Partners
Main Line Equity Partners is focused on investing in profitable, next stage growth companies, with under $10 million in revenue, looking to engage strategic break-through capital and operational support to increase market share and accelerate earnings growth. The firm’s participation goes beyond the capital and quarterly board meetings. The Main Line team is actively engaged with its portfolio companies throughout the investment lifecycle as a trusted strategic and operational partner to provide a stable platform to manage growth alongside strong, forward-thinking management teams.
About Founders Investment Banking
Founders Investment Banking is a merger and acquisition advisory firm based in Birmingham, Alabama. Its team’s proven expertise and process-based solutions help companies and business owners access capital and prepare for and execute liquidity events to achieve specific financial goals. The firm’s practice areas include a Technology Practice that serves clients operating nationwide in the Software-as-a-Service (SaaS), Internet, and Digital Media sectors; a General Transaction Practice, which serves clients from a variety of industries located in the Deep South; and an Oil and Gas Services Practice focused on the U.S. oilfield services sector. In order to assist Founders Investment Banking with securities related transactions, including this transaction, certain Principals are registered investment banking agents of M&A Securities Group, Inc., member FINRA/SiPC. M&A Securities Group and Founders are not affiliated entities. The testimonial presented herein does not guarantee future performance or success. For more information, visit www.foundersib.com.