On February 5, 2024 language services providers (LSPs) Jonckers and Acclaro announced that the companies have merged, effective February 1, 2024. Jonckers was founded in 1994 by Marc Jonckers, and Acclaro was founded in 2002 by Michael Kriz, who is still the company’s CEO.
Investment firm Mayfair Equity Partners became a majority stakeholder in Jonckers in March 2023, giving the company a solid basis for a growth strategy which, according to Jonckers’ CEO, Silke Zschweigert, includes both organic growth and growth through M&A, and will be the focus of the company’s new Chief Growth Officer, Devin Lynch.
Regarding how the merger with Acclaro came about, Zschweigert told Slator that “after months of careful planning and strategy development it became clear that it would be a great fit for both teams … We have both been aware and highly impressed with each other’s companies for some time. While not competitors, despite both being in the tech and e-commerce localization space, we quickly saw highly complementary aspects of our organizations and offerings.”
When asked about Joncker’s overall strategy and the role of mergers and acquisitions, the CEO replied that both Mayfair and the LSP have been open about the growth strategy and the involvement of acquisitions in helping accelerate that growth. She added that they see great potential value in adding both new AI-enabled capabilities and new geographies.
Shared Belief in Technology-Driven Growth
Zschweigert commented that Jonckers’ WordsOnline platform, combined with human specialists, “can translate content five times faster at half the cost of traditional translation services,” adding that “the company continuously tests new use cases to explore where else AI can help customers and make services faster and more cost-efficient without compromising on quality … AI powered + human-certified is the key.”
With Acclaro and Jonckers having “similar size and shared values, the merger allows the company to expand investments in AI-focused technology, people, and service offerings,” commented Michael Kriz, Acclaro’s CEO.
As to industries served, Jonckers’ Zschweigert said that the companies will continue focusing on customers in the technology, e-commerce/retail, travel/hospitality sectors, with services that include translation (web, marketing, technical, UI/UA, etc.), multimedia localization, testing (both linguistic and functional) and e-learning localization.
Expanded Geographic Coverage
The expectation is that the combined group will be in the top 30 of the Slator Language Service Provider Index (LSPI), and its staff of full-time employees will be approximately 300. Acclaro’s Kriz added that the merger allows the company to expand investments in AI-focused technology, people, and service offerings. Based on the latest available 2022 data, a Jonckers-Acclaro merger creates a Leader LSP with over USD 60m in annual revenues.
The group covers the US, Europe, and Asia. Acclaro was founded in the US and its employees are mainly centered around the NYC, Boston, and San Francisco Bay areas, as well as Argentina. Jonckers covers the US and Europe as well. Kriz considers the geographical spread to be “very complimentary and results in an even stronger global footprint to service our customers around the globe.”
Jonckers’ and Acclaro’s senior management teams will stay in place post-merger, with Silke Zschweigert as CEO of the newly-formed group, and Michael Kriz remaining as CEO of Acclaro. The two CEOs will be supported by Dominic Kinnon, COO of Jonckers, and Rachel Ferris, Vice President of Operations at Acclaro, and both companies will keep their current structures.