Microsoft Dynamics Master VAR Tribridge has completed the purchase of the U.S.-based Dynamics enterprise resource planning and customer relationship management software business of ePartners, creating one of the largest Dynamics value-added resellers and business consultancies in the U.S.

The purchase includes most of ePartners’ U.S. assets. The British firm, ePartners UK Limited, was acquired earlier this year by a European Microsoft Partner.

The transaction involves the integration of over a half dozen ePartners offices and approximately 85 staff members, adding to Tribridge’s 300-plus staff and 13 U.S. offices. All of those offices geographically overlap with Tribridge, with the exception of ePartners’ Nashville office. The deal will also result in a total client base of approximately 3,500.

ePartners chief executive Michael McCarthy will remain on staff through the first quarter to “oversee the transition” at which time it is likely he will “evaluate his options,” according to Tribridge chief executive Tony DiBenedetto.

DiBenedetto added that the deal was more about long-term client service strategy than gaining geography or client base. “There are lots of things our customers want from us, and this allows us to deliver,” he said. “It’s not just about selling ERP or CRM either. When customers have problems, they want the whole thing fixed, and it’s better to get that from one company. We also have lots of health care clients that don’t have ERP and [ePartners] does. They also have 80-plus consultants we can do more with. Michael [McCarthy]’s team did a great job over the years. We have been working on this [deal] with Michael for a couple of years. We are friendly competitors learning from each other, and the timing made sense.”

Accounting Today’s 2011 VAR 100 report ranked Tribridge fourth in the country among accounting and ERP resellers with $65 million in revenue, while ePartners ranked seventh at $35 million in sales.
McCarthy saw the benefit in joining with a larger firm, but he also wanted his business and employees to have the appropriate opportunity, which he said did not come to fruition until recently.

“Everyone in this space wants to build and grow their business independently, and it was more of an optional thing then and an interesting conversation, but the [Dynamics] channel is consolidating and we needed a good cultural fit and complementary business,” said McCarthy. “It takes some time to assess that. You have to be diverse in this channel and need a bigger share of the IT well. I think [Tribridge] brings strong managed services, cloud computing, and IT security to the table. Tribridge is going to do well out of this and take the Dynamics space by storm.”

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