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SAIC To Acquire Vitalize Consulting Solutions

July 20, 2011 News 10 Comments


Vitalize Consulting Solutions has signed a definitive merger agreement that will make the company an independent, wholly owned business unit of Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC), the McLean, Virginia-based government contracting firm. Terms will not be disclosed in the announcement, to be issued later this week.

Vitalize CEO Bruce Cerullo told HIStalk that SAIC pursued the acquisition to support its strong position in government healthcare IT. The Department of Veterans Affairs is considering commercial healthcare IT products, while the Coast Guard has already contracted for software from Epic Systems. Vitalize, with 600 consultants and annual revenue of over $100 million, runs one of the country’s largest independent Epic practices, Cerullo said.

”Meaningful Use will normalize, but will follow with ICD-10, HIPAA 5010, and Accountable Care Organizations. We want to play hard in that arena,” Cerullo said. “SAIC has great tools and methodologies they want to bring into the commercial world and we want to move into government.”

Cerullo said Vitalize’s leadership team and organizational structure will not change. Its headquarters will stay in Reading, MA with offices in Kennett Square, PA and Santa Ana, CA.

“We’re committed to bringing together the best of Vitalize with the best of SAIC,” Cerullo said. “We’re going to go slow. SAIC is growing at 8-10%, while we’re growing 100% year over year. They know what we’re doing is working.”

He added, “Vitalize has been part organic growth, part acquisition, and I suspect we will do more of both. We’re swapping private equity owners for a strategic owner. Our organizational structure, benefits, compensation, sales, and practice-oriented structure will remain.”

Completion of the transaction is expected in August.

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Currently there are "10 comments" on this Article:

  1. Vitalize has such a terrific team and environment. I hope they are able to maintain that. I remember what happened to Healthlink when IBM acquired them, and it wasn’t pretty.

  2. SAIC is known as a beltway bandit. And not in a good way.

    Selling and delivering primarily to governmental clients is a very different animal than the private sector.

  3. This worked out well for Cerrullo and his euqity partners. As it did for other firms that drank the equity koolaid for 5 yrs then sold to a much larger corporation. We all know what happened to the others who followed the same route – the founders are all back working in the market, and the equity people are trolling for more koolaid drinkers. SAIC will prove to be the same Vitalize employees.

  4. Its always painted as a pretty picture but underneath its a dark canvas. It will be impossible to maintain the culture that Vitalize has developed over the years. The transition will be interesting for sure.

  5. I know I’m biased (& hopeful) since I’m on the marketing team at VCS, but on this side we’re all excited about the possibilities & opportunities that come from working for a larger company.

  6. I just hope that SAIC still lets the leaders at Vitalize run the company without too much interference.

    I really like the “family” culture that I have observed over the years from working with the leadership, my Sales Reps (Jamie and Tom) and all of my consultants from Vitalize.

    They all appear to very much enjoy working for Vitalize and the feeling that the company cares about them and treats them as part of this family with the same goals – to develop great relationships with their customers; to provide impeccable services; and, to do what is right for the customer.

    It keeps us coming back for more, and makes Vitalize our first choice to turn to when we need assistance.

    I think the traits of the employees, comes from the leadership at the top. I don’t want to see that leadership messed around with, nor do I want to see the environment change.

    Keep the culture!

  7. HealthLink to IBM and Superior Consultant To ACS were not good “mergers”. The Employees of these little firms suffered.

  8. I’ve been thru a SAIC aquisition once and it didn’t turn out so good. I hope this one turns out better. 🙁

  9. Does anyone remember about First Consulting merging with CSC…that was a disaster, especially for the Meditech Practice

  10. Well, it sure would be nice if companies that got acquired could have all the power that they need to continue to operate as they did in the past. But, unfortunately that rarely happens. Acquiring companies spent the money and they are then in control. They will be immediately looking for ways to provide economies of scale and that’ll mean downsizing where duplicate functions exist.

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