(Michael Hainsworth) Azalea health is an Atlanta-based software platform that integrates electronic health records with telehealth systems and mobile apps for small communities across the United States.
But for CEO Baha Zeidan, paying it forward is what makes for a healthy company on the acquisition trail – and a healthier entrepreneurial community, too.
I’m Michael Hainsworth and this is the Innovation Economy series, presented by CIBC Innovation Banking.
(Baha Zeidan) Hello, my name is Baha Zeidan. I’m the CEO of Azalea Health.
(Michael Hainsworth) The avid hiker built a software platform that integrates electronic health records with telehealth systems and mobile apps, particularly in small communities.
(Baha Zeidan) We felt they are the most underserved population of providers who need technology and need adoption of cloud solutions.
(Michael Hainsworth) It’s been an uphill climb at times for Baha over the past 14 years, but the effort has paid off. Fuelled by acquisitions, Azalea continues to grow organically.
So you sort of see hiking as a metaphor for being a startup.
If you think about a startup or a growth company, there are a lot of challenges in your way, and a lot of times you have ups and downs – hopefully more ups than downs. But at the end, it's very rewarding when you reach your destination.
(Baha Zeidan) Azalea’s growth strategy is to focus mainly on organic growth. It's a healthy way to grow our topline by continuously improving our platform and getting customers to adopt our platform and help them solve their business needs.
(Michael Hainsworth) (off camera):
You said organic growth is a healthy way to grow. Did you just give me a dad joke?
(Michael Hainsworth) Baha admits integrating the right team into the organization is no joke when it comes to any acquisition.
(Baha Zeidan) We determine if a team member is a good fit for our culture by assessing their behavior against our core values: aggressive, humble, and innovative.
(Michael Hainsworth) When Baha was looking to finance his growth without shaving off another piece of his company, he used those same core values to find a solution. CIBC Innovation Banking provided the financing and growth capital that funded two of Azalea’s recent acquisitions.
(Baha Zeidan) CIBC Innovation Banking has been a strong partner of Azalea. We are currently looking at some target acquisitions and CIBC is a great partner in funding those acquisitions.
(Baha Zeidan) They've been great partners in allowing us to understand the landscape of what other technology companies look for and need.
(Michael Hainsworth) Every founder needs guidance when taking their company to the next level, and he’s getting it from CIBC Innovation Banking – and giving it back to the local tech community at TER, the Technology Executive Roundtable in Atlanta.
(Baha Zeidan) Entrepreneurs and leaders do good by paying it forward. The return on investment is just immeasurable.
It’s so rewarding to see team members, executives, people that you are influencing on a day-to-day basis that are moving forward and creating great things in their life.
(Michael Hainsworth) A rising tide lifts all boats.
Absolutely. What a great way to put it.
(Michael Hainsworth) Be sure to catch every episode of our Innovation Economy series. Visit cibc.com/innovation banking and click the Insights link.