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LightSpeed Buys Competitor MerchantOS

Acquisition gives the technology firm a much broader reach in the world of point-of-sale software.

Technology company LightSpeed acquired competitor MerchantOS for an undisclosed sum, giving the firm a much broader reach in the world of point-of-sale software.

LightSpeed plans to merge its existing services with MerchantOS, which currently serves retailers in almost 2,500 locations.

The deal opens up a new universe of users for the traditionally Apple-centric LightSpeed. The company is also releasing LightSpeed Cloud, a point-of-purchase system for the Web at iPad.

The Montreal-based LightSpeed was founded in 2005 by chief executive officer Dax Dasilva and named Quebec’s fastest-growing company in 2011. Venture capital firm Accel Partners invested $30 million in the firm last year.

Over the past year or so, the company’s reach has more than doubled to about 15,000 store locations, which includes brands such as Adidas; McLaren; Bonobos; Treasure & Bond, a division of Nordstrom, and Toms Shoes.

Dasilva hopes that the new platform- and device-agnostic Cloud — it already has an iPad-optimized version — will widen the reach of services and help the company to partner with bigger national chains that have deeper inventory and more complex back-end systems. Now, any retailer with a desktop computer and browser can use LightSpeed’s technology. Partners will also have the ability to download catalogues directly from suppliers.