U.S. VOTING TECHNOLOGY LEADER SEQUOIA VOTING SYSTEMS ANNOUNCES NEW CORPORATE OWNERSHIP
Sale Creates 100% American-Owned and Independent Company
DENVER, COLO. (November 8, 2007) - Leading voting technology provider Sequoia Voting Systems is pleased to announce the sale of the company to a group of private U.S. investors led by Sequoia's current executive management team.
"Sequoia is an innovative company with a century-long history; hard-working and talented employees; proven products; a solid balance sheet; essentially no debt, a corporate structure that provides flexibility; an extensive customer base and a very bright future," said Jack Blaine, Sequoia President & CEO. "I am very excited and hopeful about the tremendous possibilities and numerous opportunities that lay ahead for Sequoia given the company's new structure and the completion of this sale process."
The investment group, led by Sequoia President & CEO Jack Blaine and company Chief Financial Officer Peter McManemy, purchased Sequoia from former parent company Smartmatic Corporation for an undisclosed sum. As with most transactions involving two private entities, the specific terms of the sale are not being disclosed. However, this transaction does include investment by the management team, a small loan and an earn-out. This scenario provides an excellent financial structure for Sequoia to leverage and completely eliminates Smartmatic's ownership, control and operational rights of any kind in Sequoia.
On December 22, 2006, Smartmatic Corporation announced the company's intention to sell Sequoia Voting Systems. At that time, Smartmatic CEO Antonio Mugica stated, "Sequoia's customer base has grown substantially and its revenues have increased four-fold. However, given the current climate of the United States marketplace with so much public debate over foreign ownership of firms in an area that is viewed as critical U.S. infrastructure - election technology - we feel it is in both companies' best interests to move forward as separate entities with separate ownership. As part of this process, we plan to sell our Sequoia Voting Systems ownership."
Sequoia Voting Systems worked for many months with Smartmatic to find an appropriate situation that would be a win-win for both companies.
Given Sequoia's strong position in the US electoral market and significant opportunities therein, many buyers expressed interest in Sequoia. Smartmatic selected this team to purchase Sequoia as they believe in the ability of Sequoia's current management team to perform as successfully as they have in the past, which will allow Smartmatic to capitalize on the earn-out purchase plan.
Led by Jack Blaine and Peter McManemy, the Sequoia management team has both the deep experience in the highly complex, ever-changing and regulated voting industry and the expertise in mission critical software and change management necessary to ensure future success.
"This is a great opportunity for Sequoia's customers, suppliers and employees," said Blaine. "This management team knows the elections industry inside and out and is not deterred by the challenges and changes inherent to this dynamic industry. In fact, we are motivated and excited by these challenges and changes."
Sequoia currently supplies voting technology and services to jurisdictions throughout 17 states and the District of Columbia.
Sequoia's ownership changes will have no material impact on Sequoia's current customers, employees, suppliers or the company's business operations.
About Sequoia Voting Systems (www.sequoiavote.com) Sequoia Voting Systems is an American-owned election technology company with major offices in Denver, Colorado; Jamestown, New York and Oakland, California with over a 100-year history of providing accurate, reliable and innovative voting solutions dating back to the nation's first lever-based mechanical voting equipment in the 1890s. Sequoia provides comprehensive election technology products, customized training options, ballot layout and printing services and complete implementation and support programs to its state and local government customers throughout the United States. Sequoia's product suite is includes a comprehensive election management system, precinct-based optical scan voting units, high-speed central count optical scan ballot readers, and full-face and paginating touch screen electronic voting equipment with optional printers that produce voter verified paper records. Sequoia's voting equipment is currently used by hundreds of jurisdictions throughout 17 states and the District of Columbia.