Last month CPA Global announced the acquisition of the Austin, Texas based search and analytics software provider Innography. While some in the industry have been quick to judge what on the surface appears to be an unlikely partnership, even suggesting that it spells the demise of Innography, the exact opposite seems to be the case, with Innography set to launch new offerings and enhancements over the next several months.
Tyron Stading founded Innography in 2006 with a vision to bring “big data” analytics to the IP market and position the role of IP-related insights at the forefront of business decision-making. Innography correlates information on nearly 100 million worldwide patents with financial, litigation, market and business data, using advanced machine-learning techniques to enhance data quality and provides compelling visualizations to quickly generate insights. Anyone who has attended the annual Innography meeting of customers in Austin, Texas, as I have, can tell you they have a very committed and enthusiastic client base.
Upon learning of the acquisition I reached out to Stading, who in addition to being Founder is currently President of the company and the technology visionary.
“It all came together recently,” Stading told me. “It is a good thing. We are going to be a wholly owned subsidiary, so all the officers stay in place, but now we have global physical presence to help clients in over 200 jurisdictions.”
Stading explained to me that the match between CPA Global and Innography, which at first blush may not seem like a natural fit, is really a perfect match. “Customers have always wanted their private data integrated with the public data, but we don’t have the private data,” Stading explained. “CPA has over 1,100 clients that use their IP Management Systems so there is great synergy moving forward.”
Stading, the technical brains behind the Innography search tools, told me point blank that he isn’t going anywhere and plans to stick around. “It is good for customers, it is good for employees, it is good for investors, it is really advantageous for all three,” Stading told me. “We just didn’t have the resources to do some of the things we wanted to do, but now we do. CPA Global shares our vision for the tools IP professionals will use in the future and are prepared to support us in our steps to making that vision come to life.”
The resources CPA Global brings to the table, as well as a customer base that brings private data with them that can benefit from the powerful Innography tools is what makes this acquisition so intriguing.
According to Stading, Innography is looking to double the size of its engineering team in the next year in order to accelerate development. Stading says that they do not want to force people to switch and instead are going to open up APIs to help customers regardless of the system they use. “This is the first time we actually have a realistic chance to create the best total experience for customers,” Stading explained. “I don’t want people to think we are out of the industry or that we are not going to innovate. We are going to launch things in the marketplace in the next three to four months to show that there is real execution behind the vision.”
Before I let him go, the last question I asked was how long he allowed himself to celebrate. Having founded the company nearly a decade ago and having watched it grow into the entity that it is today has been quite a ride. Having it be acquired has to be special, but knowing Tyron I suspected that he would be all business and back to work quickly. In sports coaches sometimes talk about enjoying a win for 24 hours and then getting back to work right thereafter to prepare for the next opponent. So I asked if he allowed himself at least 24 hours.
“I got 24 hours,” Stading said. “We had an internal celebration with everyone, some people from CPA came down. Great moment to pause and reflect over the last 10 years.”
Then, without missing a beat, he was off talking about the future.
“Ever since we’ve had a term sheet I’ve been thinking about the next 2 to 5 years, especially with Thompson taking a back seat in the market, essentially giving up on the market in my opinion,” Stading explained. “People now have a choice on where they are going to go and do things. It’s time to get back to work.”
And that is the Tyron Stading that I have come to know. Someone I always enjoy talking to, someone I enjoy geeking-out with about software, data and analytics, and the workaholic who started Innography.
Congratulations to Innography, and congratulations to CPA Global.
EDITORIAL NOTE: Innography has been a long time sponsor of IPWatchdog.com.