Combined company plans to expand leadership in accessibility, empowering businesses and organizations to provide equitable experiences for people with disabilities.
ARLINGTON, Va. and TORONTO, June 14, 2022 — Level Access and eSSENTIAL Accessibility, two leading digital accessibility organizations, have signed a definitive agreement to merge and create an end-to-end digital accessibility solution for businesses and organizations. Combining Level Access’s decades of full-service and deep domain expertise with eSSENTIAL Accessibility’s category-defining Accessibility-as-a-Service platform, the merger will create enhanced opportunities to partner with accessibility champions within organizations of all sizes and support them through every stage of their accessibility journey.
Upon completion of the merger, the combined team will contribute their breadth of expertise, advancements in technology, and expanded suite of services towards achieving a shared mission of providing a simple, direct way to create and mature accessibility programs. This will further ensure businesses and organizations integrate accessibility into how they operate and make decisions, weaving access into the fabric of digital systems and services. The combined entity will empower more customers to scale and deliver digital accessibility in ways that minimize risk to roadmaps, bringing together powerful and holistic capabilities that drive meaningful access for people with disabilities.
“Tim Springer and the Level Access team are pioneers of digital accessibility on whose shoulders the industry stands, champions of the accessibility community for over two decades,” said Mark Steele, eSSENTIAL Accessibility CEO and Co-Founder. “Their deep bench and unparalleled support for top accessibility experts is well known and admired throughout our market. Leading enterprises are incorporating digital accessibility as part of their Governance, Risk and Compliance capabilities in the pursuit of principled performance. In an advancing Environmental, Social and Governance era, this merger would expand our presence and enable new solutions.”
“The eSSENTIAL Accessibility team has created a category-defining Accessibility-as-a-Service platform that has made digital accessibility approachable and attainable for the broader market,” said Timothy Springer, Level Access CEO and Founder. “Our mission is to make the digital world more accessible, and this match would make that vision more possible than ever before. Level Access was founded on the idea that all people should be able to live their fullest lives through equal access to technology and combining with eSSENTIAL Accessibility would catalyze that end, as we have long shared the same drive to change the world through expansion of access.”
The merged company will be headquartered in Arlington, Virginia as a hybrid entity, which also expects to invest in the growth of key offices in Toronto, Canada and Argentina. Tim Springer will serve as CEO and Mark Steele as President of the merged organization.
eSSENTIAL Accessibility’s and Level Access’s largest outside investors KKR and JMI Equity, respectively, will continue to support the growth of the combined company. KKR’s investment is through its technology growth strategy.
The merger is expected to be completed in mid-2022, subject to customary approvals.
To read more about the strategic combination of Level Access and eSSENTIAL Accessibility, visit www.levelaccess.com/level-access-essential-accessibility and www.essentialaccessibility.com/blog/essential-accessibility-level-access.
About Level Access
Level Access has an unparalleled history in helping customers achieve and maintain compliance with the full scope of accessible technology regulations and standards including the ADA, WCAG, CVAA, AODA, EU directives on digital accessibility, and Section 508. Delivered through a comprehensive suite of software, consulting services, and training solutions, the company’s solutions ensure customer’s web, desktop, mobile, and electronic document systems are accessible to everyone. Level Access is endorsed by the American Banking Association, is a multi-year repeat winner on the Inc. 5000 list of fast-growing companies and is the only available FedRAMP authorized accessibility management platform. CEO Tim Springer was named a White House “Champion of Change” in 2014. Learn more at www.levelaccess.com.
About eSSENTIAL Accessibility
eSSENTIAL Accessibility is the smarter way to digital accessibility and legal compliance. As the leading Accessibility-as-a-Service platform, it enables brands to empower people by helping them deliver inclusive web, mobile, and product experiences that comply with global regulations and ensure that people of all abilities have equal access. Learn more at www.essentialaccessibility.com.
KKR is a leading global investment firm that offers alternative asset management as well as capital markets and insurance solutions. KKR aims to generate attractive investment returns by following a patient and disciplined investment approach, employing world-class people, and supporting growth in its portfolio companies and communities. KKR sponsors investment funds that invest in private equity, credit and real assets and has strategic partners that manage hedge funds. KKR’s insurance subsidiaries offer retirement, life and reinsurance products under the management of Global Atlantic Financial Group. References to KKR’s investments may include the activities of its sponsored funds and insurance subsidiaries. For additional information about KKR & Co. Inc. (NYSE: KKR), please visit KKR’s website at www.kkr.com and on Twitter @KKR_Co.
About JMI Equity
JMI Equity is a growth equity firm focused on investing in leading software companies. Founded in 1992, JMI has invested in over 170 businesses in its target markets, successfully completed over 110 exits, and raised more than $6 billion of committed capital. JMI partners with exceptional management teams to help build their companies into industry leaders. For more information, visit www.jmi.com.
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