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Microsoft Partner Valorem Makes HoloLens Play with Acquisition

Kansas City-based Valorem Consulting this week announced its acquisition of Microsoft technology partner IdentityMine.

IdentityMine is a 15-year-old software development firm headquartered in Seattle, Wash., with a focus on interactive design solutions built on Microsoft technologies and platforms. The company has built user experience (UX) solutions based on Kinect, Xbox, Xamarin, Windows Presentation Foundation (WPF) and the Windows 10 Universal Windows Platform (UWP), among others. Its customers include Rosetta Stone, TripAdvisor, The Discovery Channel and Ford.

Under the terms of the deal, Valorem, a Microsoft consulting partner and a winner of the 2015 RCP/Rocket Awards, will obtain IndentityMine's 80 employees, Seattle headquarters, and its offices India and Switzerland. The acquisition will bring Valorem's headcount to over 220.

IdentityMine Co-Founder Mark Brown will have a "key leadership role" and report directly to Valorem Co-Founder and Managing Partner Domnick Parretta. David Meunier, IdentityMine's other co-founder, will be brought onboard as a consultant.

"Like Valorem, IdentityMine brings deep user experience strategy and execution capabilities, an impressive client roster, and focuses primarily on Microsoft technologies," Parretta said in a prepared statement. "The acquisition of IdentityMine further strengthens our ability to bring complex user experience and design solutions to market."

For IdentityMine, the merger with Valorem stands to bolster its cloud chops. Valorem, which was founded in 2009, has long provided services around Microsoft's Azure cloud platform, as well as Office 365 and Dynamics CRM.

Valorem, for its part, says the acquisition will solidify its presence in the Pacific Northwest region with the addition of IdentityMine's Seattle headquarters. More important, it will be able to take advantage of IdentityMine's expertise in HoloLens, Microsoft's emerging mixed-reality technology.

In an interview with RCP last fall, Parretta said that Valorem was in the assessment stage with HoloLens, determining how its 3-D modeling capabilities can augment Valorem's existing cloud offerings. At the time, the company was also focused on "building the chops" among its existing employees to work with mixed-reality technologies. Since then, Valorem has been named a certified HoloLens partner by Microsoft.

The IdentityMine buy promises to expand Valorem's capabalities around HoloLens even further. IdentityMine had already been developing solutions around virtual-, augmented- and mixed-reality technologies before it was named a HoloLens Agency Partner by Microsoft earlier this year. As part of that program, IdentityMine says it was one of the earliest firms to be trained on HoloLens.

"As a combined company we are leading the way in the area of mixed reality, working with enterprise clients to create holographic experiences in real world environments that shape the future of their business," said Justin Jackson, co-founder and managing partner of Valorem, in a prepared statement.

In response to a question about whether IdentityMine's HoloLens expertise was the big driver of the acquisition, Parretta noted that the benefits span multiple areas. "It's really about delivering fully connected user experiences across solutions areas," he said. "Whether it's data visualization, mixed reality or an engaging mobile experience, user experience is moving to the forefront. IdentityMine helps Valorem expand our capabilities across all of these areas."

About the Author

Gladys Rama is the senior site producer for Redmondmag.com, RCPmag.com and MCPmag.com.

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