Everbridge Advances Strategic Plans Despite Shareholder ControversyEverbridge Advances Strategic Plans Despite Shareholder Controversy
First-quarter earnings represented an increase of 22% from a year ago.
June 7, 2022
In some respects, critical event management software company Everbridge hasn’t had the easiest year.
In March, the company was challenged by one of its shareholders, Ancora Holdings Group. Its officers insisted Everbridge evaluate sale opportunities and engage with a broad set of potential buyers. Ancora officials said Everbridge is dramatically undervalued at its current share price, which closed on Monday at $40.11. They also accuse the company of failed leadership — most notably, the fact that former CEO David Meredith left after just a few years on the job. Finally, Ancora alleges that Everbridge’s chairman of the board engaged in a conflict of interest that breached the board’s fiduciary duty to stockholders.
Channel Futures reported on Ancora’s accusations and Everbridge’s response here and here. Everbridge shareholders re-elected the company’s board despite a proxy battle waged by Ancora. However, the Boston Business Journal found that nearly one-half (49%) of stockholders who voted withheld support for chairman Jamie Ellertson.
Everbridge’s Vernon Irvin
“Ancora is a shareholder, but a small shareholder,” said Vernon Irvin, co-CEO of Everbridge. “But the reality is that our obligation is to all our shareholders. Creating value for the company will remain our chief focus. We’re transforming the business, integrating the acquisitions and not buying a lot of new companies.”
Ancora representatives might depict Everbridge as a floundering company, but it recently reported 22% growth in first-quarter earnings.
Additionally, the company has recently secured several million-dollar contracts to power public warning systems in Germany and India. This couldn’t be timelier for Germany, for example. Last year record rainfall triggered deadly flash floods – more than 200 people died – in Germany and neighboring countries. Thousands of people were evacuated from their homes. Through its contract with Germany’s federal government, Everbridge’s warning technology now can notify each citizen in that country during an emergency.
Irvin said that the initiatives behind these recent contracts reflect a streamlining of Everbridge’s programming.
“They’re early examples of things that we’re doing,” Irvin said. “But our customers – and more importantly, our partners and our sellers – are applauding the fact that we’ve simplified our platform.”
Everbridge has moved from offering several dozen individual point products to focus on four strategic bundles. These target a specific buyer persona with a unique and differentiated technology solution.
“Bundles make it simple for customers to actually be able to graduate up to different levels of sophistication on that bundle. Before that, they would have had to pick from 52 products,” Irvin said.
During the first quarter, Everbridge executives said they saw evidence that their strategic realignment was resonating with customers. Partners have also applauded the change.
Everbridge’s Patrick Brickley
“We also saw positive traction with our partners as evidenced by an increase in the mix of our deals which came through partnerships. Our partners have responded well to our simplification strategy,” said Patrick Brickley, Everbridge co-CEO, during the earnings call.
Partners may also benefit from Everbridge’s recent announcement that it has joined the Amazon Web Services (AWS) Independent Software Vendor (ISV) Accelerate program. It’s a co-sell program for AWS partners who provide software solutions that run on or integrate with AWS. It’s dedicated to the global business development of AWS partners. Joining the company’s ISV Accelerate program enables Everbridge to further meet customer needs through collaboration with the AWS sales organization. Close collaboration with AWS complements Everbridge’s ability to …
… deliver better outcomes to AWS customers, the company said.
Dominic Jones is senior vice president of partnerships and alliances at Everbridge.
“This means that we’ve got this really incredible reach now, not only for North America, and not only for enterprise, but all the way down to the SMB market where we weren’t really able to be successful before,” Jones said.
Everbridge’s Doug Dahl
Again, Everbridge attributes its successes this year, including AWS, to the simplification process the company is undergoing. That said, streamlining has meant Jasmina Muller is no longer vice president of global channel partnerships at Everbridge as the company is bringing together two separate channel programs into one, now led by Doug Dahl.
“We have undertaken similar simplification to support our technology partners that were spread across various divisions including our product group and business solutions group by consolidating their management under one single business unit,” Jones said.
Analysts agree that Everbridge is restructuring for a more solid financial future. The company has positioned itself as a leading critical event management vendor, despite shareholder grievances and low stock value. This is according to Raul Castanon, research analyst at S&P Global Market Intelligence.
451 Research’s Raul Castanon
“Everbridge was already undergoing a significant transformation prior to the [pandemic] outbreak, streamlining its operations to refocus its efforts — including strategic M&A,” Castanon said. “In my opinion, the company’s strategy – focused on proactive resiliency – aligns with key market trends that accelerated with the outbreak …This is still an evolving scenario; however, I believe data points paint a positive outlook for the company and its vision for the future, supporting a broader approach to business resiliency.”
This begs the question: If the company is streamlining several initiatives and programs, does that mean an even greater reduction in workforce?
“We are disclosing that our board of directors has approved a program to strategically realign our resources in order to accelerate our investments in our largest growth opportunities while making our operations more efficient,” Brickley said during the earnings call.
He added that this program supports the 2022 strategic initiatives to simplify Everbridge’s business and accelerate the integration of recent acquisitions. It will help drive the company’s financial objectives of sustainable growth combined with improved profitability and cash flow.
“The details of this program include a targeted realignment and reduction of headcount, facilities and other third-party steps,” Brickley said.
Officials said Everbridge has more employees now than it did at the end of 2021.
Channel Futures asked Everbridge for clarification on this point of headcount reduction, or possible layoffs. Jeff Young, vice president of corporate communications, responded.
Everbridge’s Jeff Young
“As discussed on our most recent earnings call, we are realigning our existing resources, and making incremental investments, in order to continue to deliver sustained and growing value for our customers… any changes in our operations related to the realignment and optimization of workforce and related resources are very modest, and related to this integration. It would be inappropriate to comment on them further at this time,” Young said.
He added: “We are as committed as ever to providing world-class services and support to our customers, and to the continued growth and development of our partner and channel ecosystem around the world.”
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