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GovOS Buys Digital Tax, Permitting and Licensing Provider

The acquisition of MUNIRevs stands as the first major deal for the new Kofile subsidiary. The deal also gives GovOS a presence in the short-term rental space, which is trying to recover from the pandemic.

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GovOS, a new Kofile subsidiary, has made its first major move, acquiring MUNIRevs, a Colorado-based firm that automates business tax collection, licensing and permitting for local governments.

MUNIRevs, which sometimes stylizes its name as MUNIRevs | LODGINGRevs, also enables local governments to keep closer tabs on short-term rentals via licensing and citizen complaints about those particular businesses. The company, founded in 2011, has 150,000 users across nearly 200,000 businesses, and its technology has taken part in the collection of $1.55 billion in online tax payments and fees, according to GovOS.

“It’s an opportunity for communities to get revenue they are missing now,” said GovOS President Kevin Lafeber about the technology sold by the acquired company, technology meant to eliminate manual processes.

Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

The deal is the latest in a wave of mergers and acquisitions in the gov tech space, a trend partly fueled by the pandemic and which shows no signs of easing off anytime soon.

The tax and licensing platform is free for businesses to use, while governments pay a subscription, said Erin Neer, CEO and founder of MUNIRevs. She also said the platform includes a Spanish version.

The acquisition comes at a time when local governments, trying to recover from the pandemic, are seeking to re-establish or create revenue streams. As well, many municipalities are trying to put more controls on the short-term rental market in order to keep down neighborhood noise and commotion, or to help keep down prices for longer-term, residential rentals.

Additionally, some cities — New Orleans is a recent example — have extended deadlines for short-term rental license renewals because of the pandemic, underscoring the potential for this type of technology.

“Our experience as a MUNIRevs customer has been excellent regarding both support and value,” said Alex Jakubiec, revenue manager for Vail, Colo., in a statement. “We have streamlined manual processes for both our staff and our constituents and helped us to adapt to the emerging short-term rental environment.”

In February, software provider Kofile announced it was launching GovOS as a subsidiary to take advantage of the ongoing move in government from paper to digital processes and services.

With this latest acquisition, GovOS is positioning itself for further growth in digital services.

“It extends our portfolio,” Lafeber said, “and helps position us around citizen engagement.”

In related news, GovOS also said that it was moving its headquarters from Dallas to Austin, Texas.

In a statement, the company said that will put it closer to a rich pool of tech talent, as well as leaders in the software industry. The new headquarters will have about 60 employees initially. The company plans to expand to 100 workers in Austin by the end of the year.

“In the last year, digital transformation for government has accelerated quickly in response to the challenges of 2020, and our customer base has expanded significantly,” said Lafeber in a press release. “As a result, we are increasing the size and depth of our team to meet demand. Establishing this new headquarters in northwest Austin will give us the home base we need to expand and meet the needs of our customers while inspiring us to continue pushing the limits of innovation for government technology.”
Thad Rueter writes about the business of government technology. He covered local and state governments for newspapers in the Chicago area and Florida, as well as e-commerce, digital payments and related topics for various publications. He lives in New Orleans.
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