Why this Australian software company is going public in the midst of a tech wreck
“We didn’t have as high a revenue multiple as our SaaS competitors. We’ve tried to set the price so that the newcomers can make some money rather than some of those IPOs where they value themselves very highly and the newcomers get burned while everyone else gets out,” Mr Conyngham said The Australian Financial Report.
Bridge plans to issue 22.5 million shares at 20¢ per share, valuing the company at approximately $13.9 million when it lists on the ASX on September 20.
The company was only able to price itself at a relatively low revenue multiple because it had no venture capitalists among its existing shareholders.
“A lot of technology companies (IPO) at a very high multiple and they have to because of the VC participation. The VCs need to get a return on their money. But we don’t have to because we have organic growth that funds us,” he said.
The company was founded in 2008 and focused on providing Australia’s approximately 150 employment service providers with a customer relationship management platform to manage their customers and interact with government services such as Workforce Australia.
But now that Bridge is making inroads into the NDIS market of some 17,000 service providers, the platform needs to be streamlined to make it easier to buy, Mr Conyngham said.
“The reason we’re running Floating is to make the product easier for these vendors to purchase and use, and easier for us to onboard them.
“There are 17,000 vendors (in NDIS) and unless your systems are really streamlined, you can’t get a lot of customers quickly unless it’s all automated,” he said.
It would also help to have former NDIA leader Martin Hoffman as a non-executive director on Bridge’s board, despite Mr Hoffman’s apparent unpopularity with Disability Secretary Bill Shorten.
In April, Mr Shorten said he had “not spoken to anyone in the disability sector who could say a good word about Mr Hoffman” and the NDIA announced Mr Hoffman’s resignation on June 8, the day Mr Shorten was appointed Minister was for the NDIS.
“I didn’t really pay much attention to the stuff. I was just looking at who runs NDIS and how valuable that would be to us. We’re better off knowing what the real pain points are in the NDIS from someone who has been directing the whole show,” Mr Conyngham said.
Mr. Hoffman declined an interview, but said in an email, “I believe technology like Bridge’s plays a huge role in reducing complexity and overhead, allowing providers to focus on delivering great services. “
“We owe it to the participants of the NDIS to make the program as cost-effective as possible so that the funds can be used to pursue their goals and aspirations.”
Bridge’s platform could help reduce NDIS costs by “drastically reducing overhead costs associated with support services,” Mr. Hoffman said.