We caught up with Matthew Gatter, the former Managing Director of MCR Systems, and Richard Clancy, Group CEO of Vesta Software, to talk about the acquisition process for MCR Systems and what life looks like post acquisition.
MCR Systems were formerly known as Midland Cash Registers and were founded in 1978. We were amongst the first EPOS companies in the UK to offer a cloud based solution. And on the back of that, we were able to win some fairly prestigious contracts. I was first introduced to Jonas via an email contact from Richard Clancy.
So MCR is an amazing business. We actually found out about it while doing diligence on another business. I quickly looked him up, did a bit of desktop research and reached out to Matt who was kind enough to meet with me. Well, prior to the acquisition, we weren’t doing too bad, and we’d had two years of record growth.
I chose Jonas because I felt that they had the expertise to take MCR to the next level. I also liked the decentralized model, and I felt that MCR would be able to operate as a separate entity within the Jonas organization, and it would enable us to keep the same management team in place, which I thought would give us continuity. And that was important for the team.
So the process for MCR, it was a very fast one. We sat down, we talked about his business and the background he’d had. I’d talk about Jonas and Constellation and why we’d be interested in acquiring him.
The process then moved very, very quickly after that. We got the information we required to create a valuation.
It was agreed within maybe two months after that. As they say, timing is everything and it was the right time for Matt. And he liked the story of Jonas, and we loved the business at MCM.
To other business owners who are thinking of selling their company, I can only talk to them about my experience which has been very positive.
Jonas are a company with vast expertise and vast knowledge and they know the way around acquisitions.
So what was really important for Matt and the other shareholders of was what was going to happen to them after they’d sold.
I had a lot of staff who had been with me for an awful long time and I wanted to ensure that they had job security.
So what was really important for Matt and the other shareholders of was what was going to happen to them after they’d sold. I had a lot of staff who had been with me for an awful long time and I wanted to ensure that they had job security.
Because of our philosophy of buying holds forever. It meant that he knew we were a real safe pair of hands for the business, that we would look after the business brand name, but more importantly, the staff.
Once Jonas took over, they were good to their word, we actually increased our, our headcount. We took on more staff that the existing management team continues to run the business and everything went very smoothly.
So one of the key, uh, decisions after acquisition was, was Matt leaving the business. And what made that a very easy decision for Matt to leave was because of who had worked there for many years as operations manager. We’d been helping and coaching him throughout the process after acquisition to one day take over the role of management director.
The acquisition was very, very detailed and very well done. There was a comprehensive due diligence process that we went through and I think Jonas fully understood the workings of the business before they acquired us. Initial takeover day, the guys from Jonas came in. And I explained to all the staff what would happen next, and it was a very good onboarding process.
The main benefits that Jonas have brought to MCR Systems, I think it’s, it’s the know how. They have a playbook on how to, to run and grow a successful software business, and they’ve certainly brought that to MCR Systems. We’re continually investing and growing our, our company, especially in the areas of sales and our research and development team.
It’s been a massive part of my life, MCR. A lot of friends here. And I couldn’t be more, more happy really with the way it’s worked out, not just for me personally, but for the business.
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