CFO Q&A with Paul Haworth at GetBusy PLC (LON:GETB)

GetBusy PLC (LON:GETB) Chief Financial Officer Paul Haworth caught up with DirectorsTalk for an exclusive interview to discuss what the company does, the integration & partnership with DocuSign and it fits in with their strategy.


Q1: Paul, you IPO’d last August, can you remind us who GetBusy are and what the SmartVault product is?

A1: So, GetBusy is an AIM listed software group, our focus is on document management and productivity tools. We formed and IPO’d, as you said, last summer and that was following a demerger from an Australian software group called Reckon.

We have three principal products, the first is a product called Virtual Cabinet and that is an enterprise desktop management product with a workflow tool as well.

It’s aimed at medium to large businesses, but we’ve also got our fair share of smaller customer as well. It really deals with problems of document chaos and security for example, in firms of accountants, lawyers, insurance companies, really any business that has a very high volume of paper or electronic document flow. I spent 10 years with a large accounting firm, these are real problems that can really cost huge amounts of time, money and frustrations for clients.

So, Virtual Cabinet contains a host of features that help to manage that document chaos and to improve productivity and efficiency within those companies. So, it allows, for example, sophisticated version control with documents, it automatically files emails and attachments, it has a powerful search function, it tracks documents, so you can see if somebody has viewed or actioned or downloaded a document. All that happens in real time, it provides detailed audit trails of documents and all that sits within very high levels of industry standard encryption, so it deals with security as well. The product integrates seamlessly with a host of other software tools used by our key target market for example, practice management tools or accountancy software. That helps our clients to make sure they’re using technology to establish the most efficient set up possible and ultimately be more profitable.

Our second product is SmartVault, it’s a cloud-based document management system and it’s targeted principally small to medium sized businesses. It provides really easy to use intuitive functionality that requires very limited training or set, it’s almost a plug and play product and it integrates into a growing ecosystem of accounting systems so QuickBooks, FreshBooks, Xero, those sorts of packages.

Finally, our GetBusy product which is in development, we’ll address challenges in SME, business-to-business communication and productivity.

Now, we have just over 57,000 paying customers across our platforms and they interact with over 800,000 end-users through our client portals. As a business, we operate in the UK, in the US, Australia and New Zealand although we’ve got customers in many other countries.

We’ve got a really unique culture and we move in a very agile way. We have just over 110 rock stars working for us and they’re absolute focus is on making customers more productive and happier. They’re led by a terrifically experienced Board and are CEO, Daniel Rabie.


Q2: Talking about integrations, today’s announcement is about a tie-up with DocuSign who recently completed their IPO. Can you tell us more about that?

A2: Last year, just over 800,000 digital signatures were delivered through our products and just over 30,000 of those were with SmartVault and what we found is that secure and seamless digital signature capability really helps our customers deliver a professional and efficient services to their clients. So, it helps to avoid documents being printed, signed, sent in the mail and then lost in the mail, we’ve all had experience with those sorts of things happening. It saves both parties time and money and increasingly, that digitally-enabled service is something that the customers of our customers are demanding.

DocuSign uses something called knowledge-based authentication technology, that’s a method of authentication which seeks to prove the identity of the person who’s signing the document. That’s particularly important for very sensitive documents so an analogy, typically in the UK would be using a notary to validate the identity of the person signing.

In the US, the IRS which is the tax authority, requires this more stringent knowledge-based authentication for the filing of certain statutory tax forms and around 75% of our SmartVault customers are in the accounting and bookkeeping space. So, integrating capability with our SmartVault product provides real value to our customers.

So, this agreement with DocuSign runs until November 2020, it’s both an integration and also a reseller partnership so our customers will be able to purchase DocuSign envelopes very easily through the SmartVault product in what is a very seamless experience.


Q3: So, how does this fit in with GetBusy’s strategy?

A3: It’s really simple. So, a key part of our strategy is to attract new customers to our platforms and then to deliver more value to existing customers and that will enable us to better monetise the existing customer base so digital signatures is one area where we’re able to address both of these priorities.

Last year, we delivered over 800,000 digital signatures across our platforms and the majority of those were not specifically monetised, so this partnership allows us to sell more value into the existing customer base, to monetise more features and it enables us, as a group, to continue growing our high quality recurring revenues.

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