Benchmarking for Computer Systems Design Services

Business Description

Computer Systems Design Services involve offering comprehensive IT solutions including system integration, custom software development, network setup, and IT consulting. These firms work across various industries to optimize technological capabilities, enhance system efficiencies, and ensure robust IT infrastructures, often partnering with larger software companies to provide technical and implementation expertise.

Industry Classification

  • NAICS Code: 5415 – Computer Systems Design and Related Services
  • SIC Code: 7373 – Computer Integrated Systems Design

Breakdown in the USA by Employee Count

Here’s a detailed table representing the distribution of firms in the Computer Systems Design Services industry by employee count, showcasing the estimated number of firms:

Employee Count Range Estimated Number of Firms
1 - 4 employees 8,000
5 - 9 employees 6,000
10 - 19 employees 5,000
20 - 99 employees 12,000
100+ employees 8,000

Industry Benchmarks

Gross Margin: Typically ranges between 30% to 50%. Margins are influenced by the specific services provided and the degree of customization required.

Revenue per Employee: Generally ranges from $200,000 to $300,000, reflecting the high value of technical expertise in this sector.

SDE Margin (Seller’s Discretionary Earnings Margin): Commonly between 15% to 30%, depending on the company’s operational efficiencies and client contracts.


Typical Valuation Multiples

  • EBITDA Multiple: 5x to 8x
  • Revenue Multiple: 1x to 2x
  • EBITDA Multiple to SDE Multiple: Multiply the EBITDA multiple by a factor typically ranging from 0.7 to 0.8, depending on the proportion of the owner’s compensation and discretionary expenses relative to EBITDA.

Standard multiples serve as a general guide and should not be seen as a definitive calculation of a specific company’s value, as numerous factors can influence the final valuation.

Software developer coding at desk
Businesspeople shaking hands after a deal

Key Valuation Drivers:

  • Long-term customer contracts and recurring revenue streams.
  • Proprietary technologies and intellectual property.
  • Highly skilled workforce and strong management teams.
  • Scalability of solutions and operational efficiency.

Buyers of Computer Systems Design Services Firms

Types of Buyers

  • Strategic Buyers: Larger tech companies looking for innovative technologies or specialized services to enhance their existing offerings.
  • Financial Buyers: Venture capital and private equity firms interested in profitable, scalable businesses with strong growth potential.
  • Individual Entrepreneurs: Tech-savvy individuals or groups looking to enter the industry or expand their existing operations.

Target Company Sizes

Small to Medium: Typically, firms with $1 million to $50 million in annual revenue are targeted for their niche capabilities or regional dominance.

Large Firms: Larger firms with extensive reach and a robust service portfolio attract buyers looking for significant market impact.

This document outlines the key characteristics of the Computer Systems Design Services industry, helping stakeholders understand the business landscape, performance metrics, and potential acquisition targets.