Mergers and Acquisitions, MSSP

MSSPs as Acquisition Targets: Software Vendor Snaps Up Nuspire

Credit: Adobe Stock Images

When it comes to technology service provider (TSP) mergers and acquisitions, many deals seem to have a PE firm or another managed service provider as the acquirer. But that wasn't quite the case with PDI Technologies’ acquisition of MSSP Nuspire, an MSSP Top 250 company.

Software and services vendor PDI Technologies provides ERP, data analytics, payment processing, cybersecurity and other solutions to the vertical markets of convenience retailers and petroleum wholesalers. The company does offer some managed services and professional services to support those solutions, too.

But to gain cybersecurity talent, services and capabilities, PDI acquired Nuspire, announcing the deal in June 2024. That's not such a big surprise, according to Rick Murphy, founding CEO and managing partner of buy-side M&A advisory firm Cogent Growth Partners and an expert in IT service company M&A.

Murphy told MSSP Alert that although MSSPs are expensive to buy, plenty of companies may be looking to acquire them. That's because the acquirers can quickly gain cybersecurity capabilities and talent for their own companies when they buy an MSSP.

Murphy said PDI is big enough and has a broad enough client base to need all different kinds of cybersecurity services.

“There's so many different flavors of cybersecurity right now, so you got to kind of pick and choose, which helps the different MSSPs differentiate themselves,” he said. “So, it really depends on the service stack that the MSSP is focused on. There's lots of different flavors of that service stack and they can combine them into their macro product.”

Another familiar cybersecurity giant, SonicWall, acquired Master MSSP Solutions Granted in 2023. The deal enabled SonicWall to expand its MDR portfolio for MSPs and MSSPs.

Nuspire: Not PDI’s first MSSP Acquisition

The Nuspire acquisition is PDI’s first expansion by M&A for its security solutions business since launching its cybersecurity and managed network services offerings in 2020 with the dual acquisition of Cybera and ControlScan Managed Security Services.

The Nuspire deal takes those services a step further, and executives at PDI said that Nuspire’s auto dealership specialty dovetails with PDI’s focus on convenience retail and fast food industries that are a focus for PDI.

"The automotive dealerships supported by Nuspire share similarities to the convenience retail and QSR (fast food) industries already served by PDI," Chris Berry, president of Security Solutions for PDI Technologies, said in a press statement. "Both are fast-paced, high-volume and complex connected environments across distributed networks where system reliability, customer satisfaction and data security are paramount — and where vulnerabilities are abundant.”

Nuspire’s key offerings include managed security services (MSS), managed detection and response (MDR), endpoint detection and response (EDR), and cybersecurity consulting capabilities such as incident preparedness, threat modeling, and executive advisory services. And as an MSSP, Nuspire offers a 27/7 SOC.

"From ransomware attacks to data breaches, phishing attempts, and more, there are nonstop cyberthreats to businesses of every type, size, and maturity," Nuspire CEO Lewie Dunsworth said in a press statement. "As we become a part of PDI, our teams will be able to deliver and scale even more powerful security technologies that allow current and future customers to thrive within an evolving threat landscape."

Jim Masters

Jim Masters is Managing Editor of MSSP Alert, and holds a B.A. degree in Journalism from Northern Illinois University. His career has spanned governmental and investigative reporting for daily newspapers in the Northwest Indiana Region and 16 years in a global internal communications role for a Fortune 500 professional services company. Additionally, he is co-owner of the Lake County Corn Dogs minor league baseball franchise, located in Crown Point, Indiana. In his spare time, he enjoys writing and recording his own music, oil painting, biking, volleyball, golf and cheering on the Corn Dogs.