M&A Moves: Accenture Federal Services acquires McLean analytics firm Novetta - Technical.ly DC

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M&A Moves: Accenture Federal Services acquires McLean analytics firm Novetta

Plus, Arlington-based Vemo Education acquires Boston-based Edmit, and Microsoft brings on Maryland's ReFirm Labs.

A rendering of the Accenture Federal Digital Studio in the District.

(Courtesy photo)

M&A Moves is a Technical.ly column where we highlight D.C.-area companies completing mergers and making acquisitions to scale their businesses. Have a submission? Email us at dc@technical.ly and tell us why it belongs in the roundup.


Arlington, Virginia-based Vemo Education, which offers loan alternatives to college students, recently acquired Edmit, a Boston-based edtech company, for undisclosed terms.

Working with high schools and financial institutions, Edmit offers tools to help families plan for college financially. The company will maintain its current staff, keep its name and operate independently. Edmit CEO Nick Ducoff will maintain his title, as well. Of note, Edmit’s product head Matt McCabe already had some DMV connections, with prior roles at Reston, Virginia-based Virid, the Herndon, Virginia-based National Student Clearinghouse and the Common Application, which is headquartered in Arlington.

Vemo Education CEO Tonio DeSorrento said that schools and students need to think beyond the front-end costs of education, and more strongly consider potential employment outcomes.

“By teaming up with Edmit, we’re giving schools visibility into the college decision process that they’ve never had before,” DeSorrento said in a statement. “It’s about helping colleges understand—and then stand behind—their value, to prove the cost of education is worth it, or to make changes when they’re not setting the right expectations.”

Vemo also intends to continue on with hiring. DeSorrento told the Washington Business Journal that the company had 50 employees prior to the acquisition, but intends to grow that to 60 by the end of the year.

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Arlington-based Accenture Federal Services acquired McLean, Virginia-based Novetta for undisclosed terms, the company announced Monday. Novetta’s 1,300 employees will join Accenture’s team of 10,500 through the deal.

Novetta, an analytics company, works primarily in machine learning, data and open source analytics, cloud engineering and cybersecurity for national security and federal service entities. With the acquisition, Accenture stands to boost its digital capabilities and expand on its work in the national security sector.

“Novetta will bring expanded capabilities, broad client relationships, and unique assets that complement our work in the national security sector and add greater scale to our digital capabilities,” said Accenture CEO John Goodman, in a statement. “By joining forces, we will help clients in all government sectors become leaders in using sophisticated analytics and emerging technologies to solve problems in new ways and transform how they meet their missions.”

Prior to the acquisition, Accenture has landed contracts with entities including Navy Medicine and the US Department of Health and Human Services.

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Microsoft announced Wednesday that it is acquiring Fulton, Maryland-based ReFirm Labs, a cybersecurity startup. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Microsoft acquired the company for its expertise in securing firmware, which is the software that’s used to control hardware in connected devices. Since its founding in 2017, ReFirm has made an effort to raise awareness around security for Internet of Things devices that such firmware powers.

In a blog post announcing the acquisition, Microsoft Director of Enterprise and OS Security David Weston called ReFirm an “incredible addition to Microsoft.”

“We are thrilled to take this next step with ReFirm Labs to proactively address what is already becoming the next big attack surface, firmware,” Weston wrote. “Together, [we] will continue to provide innovation and value to our customers by helping them discover, monitor, and update all of their network-connected devices.”

Since its founding, ReFirm has raised $3.5 million with support from Fulton-based DataTribe and Maryland early-stage funding agency  TEDCO, as well as New Dominion Angels and Tysons Angels, both based in Virginia.

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Tetra Tech, a Southern California consulting and engineering firm, acquired the Kaizen Company, a downtown DC firm focused on international development.

Kaizen’s over 150 employees will join Tetra Tech’s Government Services Group through the acquisition. Kaizen primarily develops tools for countries overseas that help with health, education governance and sustainable economic growth.

Tetra Tech’s CEO Dan Batrack said the acquisition of Kaizen will allow the California company to expand its work in management consulting and to further its work worldwide. Terms of the deal were not announced.

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