M&A Moves: In a $3B deal, Reston’s Neustar will be acquired by a Chicago credit reporting firm

Plus, DC's Guidehouse takes ownership of NoVa's Dovel Technologies and Fairfax-based DigitalSpec is striking a deal with Hawaii's Island Empire Community Development.

The nation's capital.

(Photo via Pixabay, used under a Creative Commons license)

With a new quarter upon us, we’re excited to see how the year ends, business-wise (likely strong, if patterns in the rest of the year are any indication). Squeezing in a few last-minute mergers, September made headway with plenty of deals for DMV companies, both getting scooped up and being acquired in the tech scene.

Here’s what you can expect to see closing in Q4.


In one of the biggest-dollar deals of the year, Neustar, the Reston, Virginia-based identity resolution tech company, will be almost entirely owned by Chicago’s TransUnion by the end of 2021.

The companies announced last month that TransUnion, a credit reporting conglomerate, will be acquiring the marketing, fraud and communications businesses from Golden Gate Capital in a $3.1 billion cash deal. According to TransUnion, the deal will help extend its digital identity capabilities, which means customers can feel more secure in online transactions.

Neustar will still own its cybersecurity business, now known as Neustar Security Solutions. By the end of 2021, the company is expected to generate approximately $575 million of revenue and $115 million in adjusted earnings.

“TransUnion and Neustar share a similar strategic vision, culture and focus on building innovative identity-based solutions which enable trusted connections between companies and people,” said Charlie Gottdiener, CEO of Neustar, in a statement. “The two companies’ complementary businesses, products and relationships will offer benefits for our combined customers, employees and other stakeholders across a diverse set of markets.”


Guidehouse, a DC management consulting firm owned by Veritas Capital, will be acquiring McLean, Virginia’s Dovel Technologies from Macquarie Capital. Terms of the deal were not revealed, however the 1,800-person Dovel is expected to generate over $2 billion in annual revenue.

Dovel CEO Damon Griggs (Photo via LinkedIn)

Dovel, a software company focused on public health and human services, has seen plenty of successes over the past few years. In August, it once again landed on the Inc 5000 list of fastest-growing companies. And last month, Damon Griggs, CEO of the company, was named an Entrepreneur of the Year in Ernst & Young’s Mid-Atlantic awards.


In 2020, the company also created a new advisory board for its growth plans. Adaeze Enekwechi of Alliance for Health Policy and BehaVR; Lynn Goldman of George Washington University and former medical executive for the Navy Louis Tripoli were the first three appointed members.

“Together, Dovel and Guidehouse will create a powerful, technology-driven organization, characterized by deep industry expertise and leading technical know-how,” Griggs said in a statement. “Our companies are aligned with similar cultures and strong core values. Through the integration of our two firms, our employees will experience an innovative and collaborative environment with expanded growth opportunities, while our combined clients will access a wider array of expertise, tools, and technologies to support their most important initiatives. We look forward to this new chapter together.”


Fairfax, Virginia-based IT solutions firm DIGITALSPEC is set to be acquired by growth fund Neural Investments, in partnership with Hawaii’s Island Empire Community Development.

According to Island Empire, the acquisition is centered around growth and will generate continued buildout of DigitalSpec’s core services. The intention, it said, is to leverage larger contracts up to $100 million while continuing to secure existing ones.

Current CEO Charles Dadoo and Chief Growth Officer Vishal Dadoo will both stay on to lead the company following the acquisition.

“As a cofounder of DIGITALSPEC, I am extremely excited that this acquisition will allow us to create a platform company with the leadership, infrastructure, and ideation necessary to attract strong business partners and position us for exponential growth,” Vishal said.


Check on these other deals getting inked as of late:

  • Reston-based ScienceLogic, which provides cloud IT management, acquired Restorepoint, a UK-based network configuration and change management firm. The acquisition will build ScienceLogic’s portfolio in the network and security operations spaces.
  • Technology-enabled business firm Sedgwick acquired Bethesda, Maryland government contracting firm Managed Care Advisors. The company frequently provides workers’ compensation and health services to the federal government.
  • ViON Corporation, a Herndon, Virginia IT infrastructure company, sold its cloud services arm to fellow Herndon IT provider Peraton, effective immediately.
  • Vienna, Virginia’s Criterion Systems, a cybersecurity and IT company, acquired Protas Solutions in September for an undisclosed amount. The data science and engineering firm will now operate as a wholly-owned subsidiary of Criterion.
  • Booz Allen Hamilton, the tech consulting giant headquartered in McLean, Virginia, acquired digital forensics and incident response company Tracepoint. The news follows a strategic investment Booz Allen made into the company in January of this year, however terms of both deals have not been revealed.
  • DC government media company GovExec acquired Market Connections, a government market research services company. It’s the latest in a series of acquisitions from GovExec this year.
  • Alexandria, Virginia’s SBG Technology Solutions, an IT services provider to the federal government, has been acquired by Florida healthtech firm Document Storage Systems. Going forward, SBG will be a unit of Document Storage and continue its work in product and service expansion.
  • DC-based medtech company Danaher Corporation has completed its acquisition of Aldevron, a Midwestern life sciences firm.
  • Herndon govtech firm Octo and Reston IT services company Tyto Athene have announced a merger. The joint company will now operate as Octo-Athene to provide IT solutions to federal government contractors.
  • Pharmacy conglomerate Walgreens is reportedly considering an acquisition of Evolent Health, the Arlington-based healthcare management company, according to Bloomberg.
  • Potomac, Maryland-based Castellum, a defense-oriented technology company, signed a letter of intent last month to acquire an unnamed East Coast-based government contractor with $2 million in annual revenue. The deal is expected to close by the end of October.
  • DC’s DirectTrust, a nonprofit vendor-neutral alliance in the healthtech space, has acquired the assets of SAFE Identity, a certification body in identity assurance.
  • Capgemini, a consulting and technology services firm headquartered in Paris, has entered into a stock purchase agreement to acquire Rockville software company VariQ. The agreement is pending US regulatory approvals.
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