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Lightspeed POS buys Swiss startup to drive European expansion

Montreal-based Lightspeed POS Inc. has bought a Swiss company called iKentoo as part of a European expansion.The purchase price of the deal wasn’t disclosed, but the company said that it would provide more detail about the acquisition, including the price paid, when Lightspeed reports its quarterly earnings on Aug. 8.Lightspeed makes cloud-based point-of-sale software for small and medium-sized retailers and restaurants, and their software is currently used at more than 49,000 locations around the world. About one-third of their customers are in Europe. Lightspeed raises $240-million in biggest Canadian tech IPO in almost 9 years Lightspeed is writing a new chapter in the Canadian tech story iKentoo is currently available in 14 countries, but is heavily focused on France, Switzerland and South Africa. Like Lightspeed, iKentoo makes point of sale software which runs on iPads for restaurants and bars.Lightspeed already has an iPad app, but what they don’t have is customers in France and Switzerland.Speaking to the Financial Post about the deal, Lightspeed CEO Dax Dasilva explained that point-of-sale systems are often very specifically tailored to individual countries, based on local regulatory requirements.“Europe is one world, but as we all know, it’s a collection of individual countries with individual localization needs, and they’ve kind of already done that in these markets and grown really, really well,” Dasilva said.“As we look to build a global leader … they were just a really, really nice fit to round out our presence in Europe. You know, we’re strong in Netherlands and Belgium and the U.K. and they bring us France and Switzerland and getting into South Africa.”Right now a lot of point-of-sale software is outdated, running on individual devices in stores and restaurants. Lightspeed’s aim is to become the dominant brand for cloud-based point-of-sale software that can also handle things like e-commerce functions and loyalty programs to track customers.Lightspeed CFO Brandon Nussey said that they’re currently competing on a country-by-country basis to build a globally dominant brand.“Once we have that scale, it just unlocks so many more opportunities around how we leverage data around that base, how we leverage that transaction volume through payments and so on, but all that needs scale to really take effect, and that’s why we’re working so hard to get that scale organically and through inorganic initiatives like this,” he said.“We’re not the only people with that idea, but as we embark across Europe, into Australia, and in Canada and the U.S., we compete with different upstart cloud vendors in each one of these territories who set out to do the same thing.”• Email: jmcleod@nationalpost.com | Twitter:

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