IRIS Software, a U.K.-based provider of accounting software, has acquired AccountantsWorld, a longtime provider of accounting and payroll software and cloud-based services to accountants, based in Hauppauge, New York.
The deal is part of IRIS’s goal of expanding its foothold in North America. Its brands include IRIS Star Practice Management, IRIS FMP, IRIS Innervision, Practice Engine, Doc.It (which it acquired in July 2021), PSI Payroll, Senta and Conarc (which it acquired in September 2021).
AccountantsWorld has been a pioneer in the cloud-based accounting technology space; it was co-founded in 1984 as Micro Vision Software by Dr. Chandra Bhansali and his wife Sharada, after Sharada discovered an error on their tax return and they decided to write their own tax software. Micro Vision was one of the first companies to develop Windows-based client write-up, payroll, tax and practice management software for accountants, and, after the World Wide Web became popular, to develop an online service for accountants called AccountantsWorld.com in 1999. The company was renamed AccountantsWorld in 2003 and capitalized on the increasing popularity of cloud-based technology for client accounting services. Unlike many of its competitors over the years, it has resisted being acquired by larger companies until now. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.
“For the past 30 years, we have made it our mission to deliver innovative ways for accountants to utilize technology that empowers them to become indispensable, trusted partners to their clients, ingrained in critical business functions,” Chandra Bhansali said in a statement Thursday. “Joining IRIS further advances our mission. CAS services are critically important for accountant firms and joining IRIS allows them to deliver more financial value to their clients and let them focus on their business.”
Chandra and Sharada Bhansali will be retiring from the operational leadership of AccountantsWorld at the end of January 2022, according to a spokesperson for IRIS. “They will be supporting the business from a strategic and vision perspective in a consultancy role over the next few months, guiding AccountantsWorld through the start of its transition into the IRIS family,” she added. “The wider team will remain with the business to drive it forward on its next chapter of growth.”
IRIS plans to continue building its presence in North America, combining its recent acquisitions of Doc.IT and Conarc with its existing offerings for CPAs, including Star Practice Management, Innervision, FMP, PSI, Senta and Practice Engine, while making future acquisitions and developing new products. It said it currently works with 50 of the Top 100 CPA firms, along with many small and midsized firms. AccountantsWorld has long catered to smaller accounting firms.
“We are excited to welcome AccountantsWorld into the IRIS family as we continue to expand our North American presence to empower accounting firms to manage and grow their practices more efficiently and become better advisors to their clients,” IRIS Software Group CEO Elona Mortimer-Zhika said in a statement. “The AccountantsWorld founders pioneered cloud technology for accountants, and the holistic suite of cloud-based solutions they have created are an exceptional addition to our offerings. Together they help accountants transform their practices with solutions that drive automation, efficiency, and productivity, and allow them to introduce new and value-added services.”