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Kofile Fuels Digital Document Push With Texas Acquisition

The gov tech software firm has bought Data Preservation Solutions in a deal that will help Kofile offer more digital documentation services to local governments. Kofile already serves 3,000 government clients.

Gov tech software firm Kofile is expanding its reach in Texas via the acquisition of Data Preservation Solutions (DPS) in a deal that reflects the ongoing push to digitize government documents and local civic services.

DPS provides document restoration, preservation, indexing and imaging services to Texas local governments. The company will come under the umbrella of Kofile Services, which provides similar services. Dallas-based Kofile was founded in 2009 and says it has more than 3,000 local government clients and has digitized at least 225 million documents. Audax Private Equity, an investment firm, bought Kofile in 2020.

The companies didn't disclose the financial terms of the deal.

For Kofile, the acquisition will bring synergies to the company’s overall offerings, the company said. As Kofile put it in a statement, “The two companies can offer solutions to any and every government agency tasked with recordkeeping. This includes records across a wide range of document types, from recent birth certificates to centuries-old historical documents.”

The DPS acquisition comes as the pandemic highlights the importance of digital and remote local government services of all types. The deal also follows the launch earlier this year of GovOS, a Kofile subsidiary formed after the acquisition of SeamlessDocs that focuses on converting paper-based processes to online services. Both moves come as government digitization is picking up speed.

“The next 20 years will be the most important time in the history of document preservation and access,” said Kofile CEO Michael Crosno in the statement. “The accelerated pace of digital transformation, the shifting expectations of employees and constituents alike and an increasingly complex cybersecurity landscape have all converged to present challenges, but also opportunities.”

Indeed, Kofile is in one sense fighting against time, at least according to Jonathan Mohn, president of Kofile Services.

"We’re seeing a steadily increasing danger of loss of physical records due to acidification and humidity, in addition to the regular occurrences of fire, water and storm damage of archival storage," he wrote in an email to Government Technology. "So it’s critical that we can help local governments safeguard permanent records and vitals from these threats."

The deal also reflects other realities as local governments craft their immediate post-pandemic future.

"Right now, we are 100 percent focused on providing our customers with the best possible experience. That means we must continue to expand the resources and expertise they have access to," Mohn said. "However, we’re also faced with a hypercompetitive labor market right now, particularly for skilled workers. This acquisition is the best way for us to grow our team and ensure we can continue to meet and exceed our customers’ needs."

He offered no further details about how the DPS leadership and workforce will be integrated into Kofile. For his part, DPS owner and President Brian Rathe said the acquisition offers the right fit for DPS' vision and services.

“In evaluating Kofile, we found a new management team that has re-committed the organization to putting the customer first in everything they do,” Rathe said in the statement. “They share our belief that it is paramount to build trust with customers by going above and beyond what’s expected. We’re confident that we’re partnering with an organization that will continue the legacy of what we’ve built while preserving the legacy of local governments across the U.S.”
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.