Liquidity Startups

Microsoft Acquires Movere, A Washington-Based SaaS Startup

Morning Markets: Microsoft’s startup acquisition is now tied for its fastest in a year.

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Yesterday Microsoft announced that it has acquired Movere, a Bellevue, Washington-based startup founded in 2008. The SaaS company helped customers “plan cloud migrations and continuously optimize, monitor and analyze IT environments,” according to its website.

Given Microsoft’s push to grow its Azure cloud computing service in competition with Amazon’s AWS, the purchase seems to fit current corporate strategy in Redmond. In a statement, Microsoft wrote that the deal will “complement Azure Migrate […] making migration an easier process for our customers.”

Clearing a path to the cloud is a good idea if you want to sell more cloud products.

We aren’t incredibly interested in the enterprise migration dynamics, however. We’re more curious about Microsoft’s pace of acquiring startups. We’ve tuned our ears closer to the beat of acquisitions in recent months as the IPO market works to get a portion of the global unicorn population public; can there be enough startup liquidity before a material market correction to provide real returns to the investors behind venture capital?

From that prism, Movere is an odd duck. The firm has no known raised private capital according to Crunchbase data. However, with an 11-year operating history, and a deal large enough to draw a Microsoft blog post, the deal was sufficiently material to warrant an update of our deal tracker.

Here’s the latest concerning Microsoft’s buys, with a quarter-to-date figure in place for the current Q3 2019:

The Movere deal makes Q3 2019 the most active quarter at Microsoft for known startup buys since Q4 2018. One more and it will represent the strongest tally since Q2 2018, whose eight acquisitions likely represents a peak that won’t be replicated for some time. Certainly not in what remains of the current calendar quarter.

Aside from Obsidian Entertainment, Microsoft is buying development and cloud tooling. Movere is, therefore, an unsurprising purchase, joining deals like BlueTalon (data security), DataSense (PaaS), Citus Data (real-time data). If you’re looking to exit your startup, and work in the cloud space, here’s a reminder that at least one giant is buying.

Illustration: Dom Guzman.

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