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Accela CEO Talks Growth and New Investment — ICYMI

On a special episode of ICYMI, Accela CEO Gary Kovacs discusses the company's new strategic growth investment from Francisco Partners, as well as its commitment to advancing the gov tech industry.

Coming off a fiscal year in which Accela experienced record double-digit growth ... including a 31 percent increase in SaaS annual recurring revenue, a 36 percent increase in new account acquisition and net customer retention of 117 percent, one might wonder where the company will go from there.

"We're just getting started," said CEO Gary Kovacs.

Kovacs appeared on a special midweek episode of ICYMI to discuss the recent announcement that Accela had taken on a second private equity investor. The additional investment will allow the company to continue its journey to make it as easy for constituents to interact with government as they would with Amazon or any other online company. He envisions thoughtful and meaningful acquisitions and anticipates that the new partnership will stimulate growth and allow Accela to do even more for its customers.

Andrew Kowal of Francisco Partners (the new investor) and Jon Nuger of Berkshire Partners (who acquired Accela in 2017) also weighed in with their insights about the gov tech market in general and Accela in particular. Both recognized the large market and the growing need for technology as well as Accela's valuable core product and relentless focus on customer relationships.

Kovacs' advice was clear — trying to spread across the whole market and not paying attention to details before moving on to the next transaction never scales. Instead, he said, focus on doing right by the customers. Follow up with them. Take ownership if you make a mistake and fix things.

"If you build that trust with each other, they will be with you for life ... not because they have to be, but because they choose to be," he said.

Kovacs attributes Accela's success to this focus on the customer.

"You haven't seen yet what we are going to be capable of," he said.



“In Case You Missed It” is Government Technology’s weekly news roundup and interview live show featuring e.Republic* Chief Innovation Officer Dustin Haisler and Deputy Chief Innovation Officer Joe Morris as they bring their analysis and insight to the week’s most important stories in state and local government.

Follow along live Fridays at 12 p.m. PST on LinkedIn and YouTube.

*Note: e.Republic is Government Technology's parent company.
Dustin Haisler is the president of Government Technology's parent company e.Republic. Previously the finance director and later CIO for Manor, Texas, a small city outside Austin, Haisler quickly built a track record and reputation as an early innovator in civic tech. As President, Haisler drives exponential growth, implements new ideas and promotes a corporate culture that rewards creativity. Read his full bio.
Joseph Morris is the chief innovation officer of <i>Government Technology</i>’s parent company e.Republic and a national keynote speaker on issues, trends and drivers impacting state and local government and education. He has authored publications and reports on funding streams, technology investment areas and public-sector priorities, and has led roundtables, projects and initiatives focused on issues within the public sector. Joe has conducted state and local government research with e.Republic since 2007 and knows the ins and outs of government on all levels. He received his Bachelor of Arts in government and international relations from the California State University, Sacramento.