Unicorns 15/229 – Infor

Unicorns 15/229 – Infor


Key people: Charles Phillips(CEO), Duncan Angove(President), Stephan Scholl (President),Pam Murphy(COO)
Owner: Koch Industries Golden Gate Capital Partners
Number of employees: 16,000(2017)

Infor is a multi-national privately held United States-based enterprise software company. Headquartered in New York City, Infor focuses on business applications for organizations and delivered via cloud computing as a service. Originally focused on software ranging from financial systems and enterprise resource planning (ERP) to supply chain and customer relationship management, in 2010 Infor began to focus on software for industry niches, as well as user-friendly software design. Infor deploys its cloud applications through Amazon Web Services and various open source software platforms.

Infor acquired over forty other software companies since its 2002 founding as Agilysis, for example acquiring GEAC ERP for US$1 billion, Lawson Software for US$2 billion, and GT Nexus for $675 million. Infor had around 58 million cloud users as of July 2016, as well as around 90,000 corporate customers overall. Infor is active in 200 countries and territories with around 15,000 employees. Infor’s customers includ ed Bausch & Lomb, Ferrari, Heineken, Wyndham Hotels, Hershey Entertainment and Resorts, Boskalis, EBSCO, Legacy Health, and Best Western International.


Founding and early acquisitions (2002–2009)

In February 2005, Infor acquired MAPICS for around US D$347 million, and subsequently acquired GEAC ERP in 2006 for US$1 billion. After a lawsuit filed in May 2006 attempted to halt SSA Global’s merger with Infor unless certain shareholder demands were met, Infor later completed the purchase and integrated the company. Golden Gate’s early push for acquisitions resulted in Infor having 17,500 customers by the summer of 2006. Also that year, Infor began rewriting industry-specific applications into up-to-date .Net and Java-based application providers.

New management and move (2010–2013)

After several acquisitions, in October 2010, Infor’s board of directors hired a new management team composed of four senior executives from Oracle Corporation, all four of whom joined Infor on the same day. Charles Phillips was appointed CEO, Pam Murphy was appointed chief operating officer (COO), and Duncan Angove and Stephan School became co-presidents. Phillips established a new strategic direction as CEO. In order to gain market share on Oracle and SAP, Infor also focused on providing applications with user-friendly interfaces, while continuing to rewrite applications into new code. The company acquired ERP rival Lawson Software for US$2 billion in 2011. Infor launched its Infor10 line of products in September 2011. Within the products were the ION middleware suite and a new user interface.

In the summer of 2012, Infor relocated its headquarters from Alpharetta, Georgia to New York City, citing the availability of engineers and designers in “Silicon Alley,” investment in the technology educational sector by a consortium of universities, and the proximity to customers. With several hundred employees remaining in Georgia, Infor’s new “loft-style” offices at 641 Avenue of the Americas in Manhattan were designed with the intent of promoting “collaboration and transparency.” Infor acquired Groupe Laurier CIM in August 2012. On December 4, 2012, Infor announced it had acquired Orbis Global, which used a software as a service model for its marketing resource management software. Infor integrated Orbis Global’s technology into its own customer experience product suite.

“Micro-vertical” focus and pivot to cloud (2013–2014)

The company saw around a 300 percent increase in service bookings in 2015, with revenue up that year up around 60 percent. New clients that year includ ed Wyndham Hotels, Ferrari, the San Francisco Municipal Transport Agency, Hershey Entertainment and Resorts, Boskalis, EBSCO, Legacy Health, Best Western International, and Kaman Industrial Technologies, among others. By July 2015, Infor had around 45 million users signed up to use its cloud computing software.

On August 11, 2015, Infor announced its upcoming acquisition of GT Nexus for $675 million. At the time, GT Nexus was the world’s largest cloud-based global commerce platform, with customers such as Nike Inc., Adidas AG, Home Depot Inc. and Procter & Gamble Co. and $100 billion of trade in direct goods conducted each year though its network. Explained Bloomberg, the acquired technology allows Infor customers to “leave elaborate business-management systems that run at headquarters untouched while supplying those clients’ plants with programs specialized by industry and delivered via cloud computing.” Infor acquired Predictix in July 2016, at which point Infor related that it had “more than 58 million users” in the “Infor cloud.” Active in 200 countries and territories with around 15,000 employees, Infor is currently the third largest enterprise technology provider in the world.

Investment by Koch Industries (2017)

In February 2017, Koch Equity Development LLC invested $2.68 billion in Infor, for a 66.67% equity ownership stake in the company. Infor is valued at $10 billion, and has $6 billion of debt, most of which is publicly-traded.