Waséyabek Development Company, LLC, a leading economic development firm in Michigan’s Indian Country, announced today it has become the majority owner of VES, LLC, a software development, integration, and solutions firm headquartered in Aberdeen Proving Ground, Maryland. Waséyabek is the non-gaming economic development company of the Nottawaseppi Huron Band of the Potawatomi (NHBP) Tribe based in southwest Michigan.
VES is composed entirely of engineers who are dedicated to solving the most challenging software integration problems faced by the Department of Defense (DoD). The company’s core competencies include developing custom infrastructure software, integrating embedded platform and command post systems, and prototyping emerging technologies for use in tactical edge architectures.
“Our growth strategy includes increasing our product and service offerings in the defense industry, and this acquisition is a significant investment in that market,” said Deidra Mitchell, Waséyabek President and CEO. “VES is a leading software solutions provider to the DoD, and we look to build on that vertical through innovation, collaboration and service.”
With this acquisition, Waséyabek’s portfolio of non-gaming investments increases to 31 entities, encompassing more than 500 employees. It also further diversifies the types of industries represented by businesses the NHBP Tribe owns. VES will become part of the Waséyabek Federal Group of companies.
“VES and Waséyabek have a shared vision of how to maximize our service to the DoD and at the same time expand our business into related industries in the future. We believe our company is at the right stage in its growth to partner with a company that can help us develop even greater business opportunities in the future while preserving the company’s current culture. Together, we will deliver high quality, innovative solutions to our customers.”
Under the agreement, Waséyabek will now hold a majority ownership stake in VES. The software company will continue to be led by current CEO Matthew Vidovich and COO Bryan LeBaron. Each will retain a minority ownership share of VES.
“When we first discussed adding a software solutions company to our defense-contracting portfolio, we pointed to VES as an example of the type of company we should pursue,” said Bethany Harris, President of the Waséyabek Federal Group. “To acquire a majority interest in VES represents tremendous strategic progress for the Federal Group and will allow us to bring even greater economic sustainability to the NHBP Tribe.”
Waséyabek’s internal due diligence team handled the execution of the acquisition, a process led by Chief Operating Officer Rabih Jamal with support from long-term business partners BDO and Dickinson Wright. Springer Lawson & Associates (recently acquired by Schneider Downs & Co., Inc.) served as advisors to VES. Terms of the deal are not being disclosed.