Advanced Computer Software has built a war chest of £55m, after raising £43.7m of new funds.

The company, which bought Adastra Software in 2008, says it will use the money to “pursue its goal of becoming the leading consolidator in the primary care market”.

ACS says it has identified further complementary businesses to acquire and the funds raised will enable it to fund those acquisitions more quickly and efficiently.

Vin Murria, CEO of ACS told E-Health Insider that the primary healthcare IT market remained extremely fragmented, with over 100 software vendors, and offered huge potential for consolidation. “The opportunities are staring us in the face.”

On 8 May ACS bought hosting firm Business Systems Group Holdings Plc, which provides outsourced managed services, designing, deploying and operating clients’ technical infrastructure and systems operations. The acquisition accelerated

ACS says the hosting capabilities of BSG will allow it to accelerate the roll-out of Adastra products, such as iNurse and End-of-Life, on a software as a service (SaaS) basis.

The iNurse product is prime example of an existing Adastra product that ACS believes has huge potential offered on a SaaS basis. At NHS Derby City the use of iNurse is said to have the potential to free up to 15,000 hours of district nursing time.

Murria said that one of the greatest difficulties NHS clients have is finding the capital investment for new IT systems, and the SaaS model was a proven way to overcome this barrier. Murria said that with the push to community based service models across health and social care, created new opportunities.

The company said that it intends to grow the business through “a combination of organic growth, product innovation, technical collaborations and the acquisition of businesses with strong product offerings and the potential for cross selling across the company”.

Murria said: “There are numerous opportunities to consolidate the fragmented and undeveloped IT infrastructure within the NHS and these additional funds give us the capability to implement our strategy more quickly.”