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OpenGov Results Show Growing Strength of Cloud Migrations

The 12-year-old company reports big recent sales gains — a reflection of larger trends in the gov tech world. A company executive also expresses skepticism about the role of private equity in the industry.

Cloud service concept with man finger touching digital screen with cloud service application icons at abstract city background
Even as artificial intelligence dominates the headlines, recent results from OpenGov highlight the opportunities that come with moving more public services to the cloud.

The 12-year-old company, which sells cloud-based budget, planning, procurement and other software to state and local governments, recently reported a 76 percent year-over-year increase in gross new sales in the fourth quarter of last year.

OpenGov officials say the company now has more than 1,800 public agency clients that include governments in Los Angeles, Orlando, Seattle and other markets.

Like most gov tech firms, OpenGov is private and doesn’t release full financial data. But available figures show a company poised for further growth, illustrating that the move to more digital services for governments continues to gain steam as the pandemic fades into the background, according to an OpenGov executive.

“We are really hitting our stride internally,” Matt Singer, OpenGov’s chief marketing officer, told Government Technology.

Describing COVID-19 and its resulting lockdowns and disruption of in-person interactions as a “wake-up call” for digital services, Singer said such tailwinds are still pushing more agencies toward modernization and services hosted on outside servers.

More governmental clients, in short, are choosing not to keep “their local services locked up in city hall,” he said. Evidence of that comes from other gov tech firms as well. For example, Tyler Technologies recently signed an expanded cloud services deal with Amazon Web Services.

OpenGov claims that 1 in 3 people in the U.S. are “benefiting from OpenGov solutions used by their state and local governments.”

More specifically, the company’s Cartegraph Asset Management operation — the product of a 2022 acquisition — manages more than 48 million “infrastructure assets” in the U.S. That’s up 36 percent year over year.

OpenGov also is benefiting from another hot area of gov tech: permitting and licensing. The company said more than $1 million passes through its permitting and licensing operation every workday.

There is one big trend that OpenGov doesn’t intend to follow, though, according to Singer.

That’s the substantial and growing presence of private equity (PE) in the industry as investors look for relatively safe places for their capital. Governments’ moves toward more digital services also is helping to attract PE money.

“We have no plans of selling the company,” Singer said.

The way he sees it, that gives OpenGov a competitive edge. The typical three- to five-year PE involvement in a specific company can lead to increased profitability but “declining support and product development and poor customer experience,” he said.

He said OpenGov doesn’t anticipate having to raise fresh capital anytime soon and, if so, it would likely come from the company’s current investors. According to Crunchbase, OpenGov has raised $178 million and made six acquisitions.
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 Wisconsin.