Advised HgCapital on the $5.3bn leveraged buyout of Visma by HgCapital and its investment partners GIC, Montagu and ICG from KKR and Cinven
Jun 2017
leveraged buyout of
$5,300 million
  • Sector: Application Software
  • Deal Type: Private Equity Deals
  • Engagement type: Buyside
  • Size: $5,300 million
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Arma Partners is pleased to announce that it has acted as financial advisor to HgCapital on the buyout of Visma by HgCapital and its investment partners GIC, Montagu and ICG, in a transaction valued at $5.3bn – Europe’s largest ever software buyout and one of the Top 5 globally.

Visma is a leading provider of mission critical accounting, ERP and payroll software to SMBs and Enterprises in the Nordic and Benelux regions and is one of the leading SaaS providers to SMBs in Europe. The company has approximately 6,000 employees and serves over 500,000 clients.

Since 2006, the year of HgCapital’s initial investment in Visma, the company has consistently delivered strong financial performance, growing revenue and EBITDA at CAGRs of 17% and 23% respectively between 2006 and 2016, and has completed more than 120 bolt-on acquisitions.
HgCapital will be the lead investor in the transaction, alongside GIC, Montagu and ICG, who together with HgCapital will invest a total of $1.8bn of equity. Following this transaction, KKR will realise its entire stake in the business, with Cinven separately retaining a shareholding in Visma.

This transaction highlights Arma Partners’ deep expertise in Enterprise Software and our ability to build long term relationships to unlock value for Private Equity clients over time, having previously advised HgCapital on the sale of e-conomic to Visma in 2015 and on the $3.5bn recapitalisation of Visma in 2014.

-Visma is a leading provider of mission critical accounting, ERP and payroll software to SMBs and enterprises in the Nordic and Benelux regions and is one of the leading SaaS providers to SMBs and the public sector in Europe.

-Visma has c. 500,000 clients, c. 100 offices and c. 6,000 employees.

-Between 2006 and 2016 Visma’s revenues grew fromNOK 1.6bn to NOK 7.9bn (CAGR of 17%); EBITDA increased from NOK 240m to NOK1.9bn (CAGR of 23%) and the company also completed more than 120 bolt-on acquisitions.

-HgCapital will be the lead investor in the new transaction structure, representing 41% of the equity, alongside GIC, Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund, Montagu and ICG, who will hold minority stakes.

-HgCapital is a leading European private equity firm and sector expert investor. HgCapital invests in expanding segments of the TMT, Services and Industrials sectors across Western Europe.

-HgCapital has made 37 software TMT investments and over 200 bolt-on software acquisitions since 2002, making the firm one of the most active European TMT investors.

-HgCapital led the public-to-private of Visma in 2006 and has been a key shareholder for 11 years, increasing its ownership in both 2014 and now in 2017.

-Following this transaction, KKR will have realised its entire stake in the business from its majority acquisition in 2010, with Cinven separately retaining a shareholding of c. 17% in Visma.

-HgCapital will continue to work with Visma’s management in the ongoing transition of the company’s software products to SaaS.

-Commitment of capital to Visma by GIC, Montagu and ICG demonstrates the ability of Visma to attract world-class institutional investor support to drive the future growth of the business.

-Arma Partners provided in-depth analyses of the business, its core competitors, transition towards a SaaS-centric business model and the resulting value implications and exit considerations.

-Arma partners supported the diligence efforts around key items such as organic growth, margin expansion potential, financial analysis and relevant M&A bolt-on opportunities.

-Arma also advised HgCapital on buy-side tactics and assisted in interactions with the other shareholders and consortium members.

-This transaction demonstrates Arma’s deep insight and breadth of knowledge in the application software space, particularly with businesses transitioning towards SaaS.

-It also proves Arma’s ability to build long term relationships to unlock value for Private Equity clients, having previously advised HgCapital on the sale of e-conomic to Visma in 2015 and on the $3.5bn recapitalisation of Visma in 2014.