SD Worx subsidiary Protime acquires Spanish sector peer SoftMachine
"We have the ambition to become the European market leader in workforce management solutions"
4 January 2024
Protime, the Belgian market leader in time registration and work scheduling, is acquiring its Spanish sector peer, SoftMachine. SoftMachine is a specialist provider in its home country and supports some 450 medium-sized (inter)national customers. The acquisition is part of Protime’s ambition to become the European market leader in workforce management solutions. The software company, based in Mechelen, is already active in its neighbouring regions including the UK, Scandinavia and now, in Spain.
Protime is a reference name in time registration in Belgium and the Netherlands but aims to become so in all 26 countries where its parent company, leading European HR services provider SD Worx, operates. To accelerate this international expansion, the software company acquired all the shares of its Spanish sector peer, SoftMachine. Softmachine is a specialist timekeeping provider in its home country and employs 40 people at its Barcelona headquarters and Madrid office. Last year, SoftMachine had a turnover of €3.6 million.
"By expanding with strong local partners, such as SoftMachine in Spain, we are strengthening our ambition to become the best provider of workforce management solutions in Europe,” Gille Sebrechts, CEO of Protime says. "Company culture is a very important factor for Protime, and we see many synergies with SoftMachine’s.”
"We will pool our knowledge, expertise, and network to offer our customers the best tools and services for timekeeping. It also allows us to continue investing in the personal growth and well-being of our employees”, comments Marc Noëlle, founder of SoftMachine.
The current management team at SoftMachine will remain on board. The acquisition price will not be disclosed. For this transaction, SD Worx was advised by DLA Piper Spain and EY. SoftMachine was advised by ILV SILVER.
To 10,000 customers in five years
With this acquisition, SoftMachine joins one of the largest workforce management providers in Europe. Protime also closed a commercial agreement with Nedap last week in the Netherlands to take over their time registration customers.
Protime has ambitious goals. It aims to double its customer base to over 10,000 customers in Europe within five years, by becoming active in more countries but also by growing further in its home market, Belgium. To this end, Protime will be looking to hire at least 100 additional employees in the coming year, most of whom will be based in Mechelen. Among others, Protime is looking for technical profiles, developers, consultants, customer service employees, and project managers to support its growth.
"In recent years, companies have started working more flexibly, but this flexibility does comes with challenges. Time registration can help employees maintain a healthy work-life balance. Similar to how a heart rate monitor alerts us when we are exercising too intensely, online registration tools are essential in raising concerns for employees by signalling systematically working overtime, for instance,” concludes Gille Sebrechts.