Not Apple - But a Software Company Just as Divine


  • Hubert Setzler Francis Marion University
  • Johnathan Munn Francis Marion University


strategy, acquisitions, software industry


Growth is the second stage of the business life cycle; therefore, any business that survives the Introduction phase subsequently explores expansion opportunities. In this case a southeastern church management software company, ACS Technologies, achieved growth by acquiring small competitors that did not have the drive, desire, or resources to adapt to a changing consumer market. They acquired numerous companies solely for their market share. Once the new customers had been transitioned, the acquired company was shutdown. ACS continued to look for opportunities that would expand their market and product line when a new but potentially dangerous opportunity arose.

This new opportunity was Parish Data Systems (PDS). The potential rewards and challenges would be unlike any acquisition that ACS had made before. The increased market share from merging with this company could spring ACS forward as an industry leader. However, the increased financial burden of this decision could also drive ACS to ruin. Based on the multitude of complex issues, should ACS merge with PDS?