Supply chain software firm Descartes Systems Group Inc. said today it acquired Oz Development Inc. of Westborough, Mass., for $29.5 million in a move to strengthen its e-commerce fulfillment capabilities and attract a new cadre of small-business customers.
The merger comes at a time when retailers face increasing pressure to master omnichannel fulfillment as consumers turn to their computers and mobile devices to order goods from anywhere and expect their orders to be delivered almost at the snap of their fingers. Oz provides application-integration solutions that help small to medium-sized businesses (SMBs) automate their logistics and supply chain processes.
Descartes, of Waterloo, Ont., has been on an acquisition tear in recent months, building its portfolio of logistics-oriented software platforms by purchasing "denied-party screening" service firm MK Data Services LLC for $83.5 million, and inventory replenishment collaboration software provider BearWare Inc. for $11.25 million.
The latest acquisition will help Descartes expand its customer base beyond its traditional base of national retailers by offering tools for smaller companies to manage e-commerce growth and consumer expectations of next-day delivery, according to the company. Small to mid-size retailers typically don't have fleets and instead rely on third-party providers for final-mile deliveries.
"By combining with Oz, we can better address this segment of the retail community and extend the reach of our 'Global Logistics Network' to drive more logistics messaging and application adoption," Ken Wood, Descartes' executive vice president for product management, said in a statement.
Oz markets its "Oz Development Platform" to system integrators that need to build customized solutions by mixing components from various software providers. The company also sells the "OzLINK" series of order-management optimization tools, including units for e-commerce integration, warehouse optimization, and shipping automation.