On the 20th of July 2020, HelpSystems LLC announced that they had signed an agreement with Globalscape Inc, in which HelpSystems would acquire all the outstanding shares of Globalscape. Thus ending more than twenty years of Globalscape in the MFT (managed file transfer) market.
Under the terms of the agreement, which is being billed as a merger, despite one entity purchasing the other - HelpSystems will purchase all remaining Globalscape shares for $9.50 each. Which represents a 16% premium on the closing price for Globalscape stock on the 17th of July.
But what does this mean for Globalscape customers?
In the short term there is likely to be very little change but one does have to wonder what this means for the Globalscape MFT solutions. HelpSystems already has an MFT solution in its portfolio - the well-known and successful GoAnywhere solution; which already ranks higher in a number of metrics, tested by many third-party reviews.
Interestingly, the MFT market is made up of a handful of rival vendors; and in most cases, customers who have chosen GoAnywhere or Globalscape will likely have compared their choice to the alternative and discounted it. Now those customers are faced with possibly inheriting the solution or a merged version of the solution they originally rejected.
In fact, when speaking about the acquisition, Kate Bolseth, CEO of HelpSystems ignored the clash of solutions which would result and instead spoke about a wider cyber security portfolio.
“GlobalSCAPE’s MFT solution and expertise further strengthen HelpSystems’ growing cybersecurity business. Combining this with our data loss protection and data classification technology provides depth to our triple-threat defence against customer cyber security risks.”
It is opinion of the writer that ultimately, HelpSystems is unlikely to want to maintain two solutions which for the most part, offer the same functionality. Either GoAnywhere or Globalscape MFT is going to be sidelined, whether that be deliberate or through lack of development; and customers of the losing solution migrated over to the victor.
In addition, maintaining two MFT solutions may become problematic when it comes to competitive tenders. As some businesses and public sector organisations require competitive solutions to be owed by different companies. In essence, HelpSystems will need to choose which solution to push in which scenario; and will not be able to benefit from having a wider scope with two solutions.
All of these factors lead me to believe that we will see the demise of one of these giants of MFT.
But which one will it be? Sadly for the customers of both, only time will tell whether they made the right investment.