Alex Gile is the Co-Founder & Former President of Nexternal, a leading provider of an omnichannel commerce platform serving manufacturers, distributors, and retailers. SEG served as the exclusive advisor of Nexternal on its sale to Accel-KKR backed HighJump / TrueCommerce. Alex is now a Senior Vice President at TrueCommerce and helps manage the Nexternal team.
SEG M&A Stories are unique ways to gain insight into the M&A process from former SEG clients. In this story, Alex shares his experience working with SEG to sell his software company and the benefits of having an advisor to guide him through the process:
“I’m so grateful I got together with Software Equity Group and was able to have them by my side throughout the process. The opportunities they provided to us, the amount I learned about my own business, and the mentoring were really invaluable and worth every dime.”
What is Nexternal?
Nexternal is a leading provider of an omnichannel commerce platform serving manufacturers, distributors, and retailers.
Based in Carlsbad, California, Nexternal’s platform includes a functionally rich order management system that captures business-to-business and business-to-consumer orders via standard and mobile web browsers. Going beyond traditional eCommerce, companies use Nexternal’s commerce platform to run call centers, generate and manage subscription orders, retrieve Amazon marketplace orders, create club orders, and receive orders from other systems via its API. The system acts as the single hub for all pricing, promotions, status, and customer care related to the order management lifecycle.
Why did you decide to sell?
At the time in 2015, there were many more competitors in the space than there were in 1999, and many competitors were starting to raise substantial amounts of money. I was looking around at the space and seeing what people were paying to acquire customers. As a small, profitable company, it was becoming increasingly tough to compete against these companies that have raised $75M to $100M+, so I decided I needed to either raise a lot of money to compete or sell to a bigger company where we could sell our software into their client base. So, I decided to do the latter, and shortly thereafter, we engaged Software Equity Group to help us through the process.
What are some benefits of working with an advisor?
Working with an advisor gives you many more opportunities that you would otherwise not have. We could give demos to some really big-name software companies and get them interested in our company. I am quite confident had I done everything on my own, that would not have been the case.
Another big benefit to working with an advisor is that they coach you along the way and help you think through positioning and how you want to present your company to potential buyers. When you’re running a company and heads down and working in a very myopic world, it’s sometimes tough to take a step back and see the bigger picture. SEG was able to look at the bigger picture and help us best position Nexternal to the market.
Want more SEG M&A Stories? Check out our last video featuring David Durik of Indatus.