Startups

Quorum is acquiring policy tech company Capitol Canary

"We've always had a lot of respect and admiration for the business they built," said Quorum CEO Alex Wirth. "As we watched them grow and us grow in size, we always knew that someday it would make sense to put the two businesses together."

Capitol Canary CSO Jeb Ory (left) and CEO Steven Schneider.

(Courtesy photo)

Today, there’s a new shakeup on the DMV policy and public affairs tech scene, thanks to a rather noteworthy acquisition.

DC-based Quorum, a public affairs software platform, announced that it has acquired Arlington, Virginia-based Capitol Canary (formerly Phone2Action). By combining the companies, Quorum hopes to establish a huge, fully-integrated software company in the grassroots space of DC.

Quorum CEO Alex Wirth said that the two teams will combine and the companies will operate as a single entity under the Quorum brand going forward. All in all, the new Quorum will have 336 team members, serve a combined 2,000 customers and maintain a headquarters in DC. The financial terms of the deal are not being released.

“What we’re doing is we’re putting the combined businesses together to form the leader in the public affairs space for being able to provide best-in-class, integrated software to our customers,” Wirth told Technical.ly. “What’s really exciting about this is the just size and scale.”

Capitol Canary’s cofounder and President Jeb Ory will become part of Quorum’s board following the acquisition.

The move to acquire Capitol Canary follows Quorum’s acquisition of software company CisionPAC last November. Wirth believes that this next step of combining a leading public affairs platform, specializing in grassroots advocacy, with a legislative tracking company makes a lot of sense.

According to Wirth, the two businesses began around the same time (Capitol Canary in 2013 and Quorum in 2014), and he’s always admired the work of Ory and cofounder Ximena Hartsock. In early 2021, Hartsock left the company to start a new venture, and Phone2Action rebranded as Capitol Canary a little over a year later.

“We’ve always had a lot of respect and admiration for the business they built,” Wirth said. “As we watched them grow and us grow in size, we always knew that someday it would make sense to put the two businesses together.”

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With this move, Wirth said that Quorum will be able to “double everything we’re doing,” including team size, marketing and R&D budgets and doubling down on innovation. The combined company, he predicts, will be making a splash on the public affairs software scene in DC.

“We are really excited because this is literally taking us from 60 to 100 miles per hour, in terms of what we’re able to provide,” Wirth said. “I think it’s going to have a profound impact on our team, on our customers and on the public affairs software market.”

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