Geo Week News

April 12, 2023

NV5 closes acquisition of L3Harris’ geospatial division

The acquisition continues to strengthen NV5’s position in the geospatial data sector, particularly around work with federal defense and intelligence.
Model of mine elevation made after processing drone data.
Stock Image | Shutterstock | Ungrim

Earlier this week we got some major news in the geospatial industry, with NV5 officially announcing their acquisition of L3Harris Technologies’ Visual Information Solutions business, which includes their geospatial technology and software business. News of this acquisition first broke in late December of 2022, with the deal officially closing on April 10 after receiving the necessary regulatory approval.

The terms of the acquisition have not been publicly released as of this writing - in their announcement of the news back in December L3Harris indicated that they’d get an “anticipated benefit up to $100 million” from the divestiture of this piece of their business - but we do have a few details from the news. With the acquisition, NV5 gets 16 U.S. patents for geospatial data analytics, along with ownership of an additional 13 U.S. and non-U.S. Trademark Registrations for geospatial software applications. Per the release of this news, these applications have “approximately” 500,000 global users.

It’s fair to say that software holds a significant amount of the value for this acquisition from the NV5 point of view, with some major applications included in that deal which are utilized by governmental agencies for analyzing and managing geospatial data. That software includes, but is not limited to:

  • ENVI, an image processing and analysis software used to extract information from geospatial data and is integrated with ArcGIS.

  • IDL, a scientific programming language to create visualizations out of complex numerical data.

  • Jagwire, an end-to-end tool for geointelligence (GEOINT).

  • Helios, a hyperlocal weather analytics tool.

Even before this acquisition, NV5 was certainly a leader in the geospatial space with clients from both the public and private sector, but it’s clear that they have eyes on becoming even more prominent players in the space. In addition to this acquisition, they also acquired Axim Geospatial earlier this year for an undisclosed amount, a move with an eye towards the federal defense and intelligence sectors. Given L3Harris’ connections as a whole to those spaces, it feels fair to say that those sectors will become even stronger footholds for NV5 as a whole.

Speaking about the company’s place in the industry after this latest acquisition, NV5 PE, Chairman and CEO Dickerson Wright said, “This acquisition supports NV5’s expansion in a subscription-based geospatial product and service model and strengthens our role in supporting the nation’s defense and intelligence communities through geospatial information management and analytics. As the only provider of software solutions to analyze over 200 geospatial data types and comprehensive in-house LiDAR, topobathymetric LiDAR, and full ocean depth sonar capabilities, NV5 has built a distinct competitive advantage and robust platform to support accelerated organic growth.”

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