March 13, 2017

HighJump expands voice picking tools for SMB market

Vitech acquisition adds to HighJump's supply chain consulting and voice-directed picking capabilities.

By Ben Ames

Supply chain technology provider HighJump Software Inc. disclosed today that it had acquired voice-directed picking technology vendor Vitech Business Group Inc. last month, an under-the-radar deal that continues High Jump's strategy of growth by acquisition.

HighJump bought Bellingham, Wash.-based Vitech primarily to integrate the two companies' technology offerings into one shared platform, HighJump's Chief Operating Officer Chad Collins said in a briefing with reporters and analysts at the firm's "Elevate" user conference in Orlando, Fla. The Vitech deal expands HighJump's business in providing voice-directed picking technologies through its partnerships with providers such as Zebra Technologies Corp. and Honeywell International Inc., company executives said.

Vitech provides supply chain consulting services and is a reseller of Honeywell's Vocollect brand of voice-enabled distribution technology. Vocollect is part of Honeywell.

Last month, Minneapolis-based HighJump acquired trade data network provider RedTail Solutions Inc. in a move to add more cloud-based electronic data exchange (EDI) capability for HighJump's TrueCommerce business unit. The Vitech acquisition happened shortly after the RedTail deal, but had not been previously announced. Terms of the Vitech acqusitiion were not disclosed.

Collins said HighJump plans no changes in branding or leadership at Vitech. HighJump and Vitech have been business partners since Vitech began helping customers select, purchase, implement, administer, and upgrade their HighJump software, related supply chain solutions, and auto-ID hardware in 1995.

HighJump will add Vitech to its Supply Chain line of business, which includes warehouse management system (WMS) software and helps clients govern the physical movement of goods, HighJump COO Ross Elliott said in the briefing. Meanwhile, it will add the resources from its RedTail acquisition to its TrueCommerce line, which covers the exchange of information such as networking products and omnichannel commerce data.

Elliott said RedTail and Vitech customers will not see any noticeable effect in service quality. "We will connect the networks, then assimilate the different services, and make them pervasive for all our users," Elliott said. "The end users will not notice any changes, because we take care of the plumbing in the middle through our managed service approach."

HighJump marked a growth curve in 2016 that took the company to $201 million in revenue for the first time, based largely on a focus on small and mid-sized supply chain clients. No more than 75 of HighJump's 15,000 clients are large-enterprise corporations, and the new acquisitions won't change that balance.

HighJump gained access to a pool of 350 new clients with the RedTail acquisition and 75 to 100 more with the Vitech purchase, Collins said.

About the Author

Ben Ames
Senior Editor
Ben Ames has spent 20 years as a journalist since starting out as a daily newspaper reporter in Pennsylvania in 1995. From 1999 forward, he has focused on business and technology reporting for a number of trade journals, beginning when he joined Design News and Modern Materials Handling magazines. Ames is author of the trail guide "Hiking Massachusetts" and is a graduate of the Columbia School of Journalism.

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