30 May 2018
Linklaters advises Hg on £1.3bn buyout of IRIS Software Group
- Joint acquisition alongside ICG is UK’s largest ever private equity-led software buyout
- Latest of a string of deals for Hg which have included an investment in Access Group and sale of Allocate Software
- Deal caps a busy period for Linklaters’ financial sponsor team, having also advised Macquarie on the €4.6bn sale of Techem, Oakley Capital on the sale of Facile.It to EQT, I Squared on the acquisition of TIP Trailer Services, PSP Investments on its investment in the £2.2bn Silver Lake-backed offer for ZPG plc and ION Investment Group on the £1.5bn offer for Fidessa group plc
Linklaters has advised Hg Saturn, a fund of leading private equity firm, Hg, on the buyout of IRIS Software Group from Hg6. The joint acquisition, alongside Intermediate Capital Group (ICG) values the business at £1.3bn, making it the UK’s largest ever private equity software buyout.
IRIS Software provides software and services to the UK’s accountancy, education and business markets.
The Linklaters team was led by Corporate Partners Alex Woodward and Chris Boycott.
The deal follows closely behind other significant deals Linklaters has worked on for Hg. In April the firm supported the strategic investment in the Access Group, a leading provider of fully integrated business management software to UK mid-market organisations, giving it an enterprise value of approximately £1 billion. The firm also advised Hg on the sale of Allocate Software, an international provider of healthcare workforce management software and Dynama Solutions, a provider of defence and maritime workforce management software, to Vista Equity Partners and on Hg’s investment in FE Group.
Alex Woodward, co-head of the Financial Sponsors sector at Linklaters commented;
“It has been a very active couple of months for private equity with some notable transactions over the last few months. It is a reflection on the quality of our cross-border team that our financial sponsor clients continue to turn to us on some of the highest profile deals in the market”
Other significant deals Linklaters European financial sponsor team have advised on over the last two months include advising:
- Macquarie on the EUR 4.6bn sale of Techem to a consortium of financial investors
- Oakley on the sale of Facile and follow on investment to EQT (May)
- I Squared on the acquisition of TIP Trailer Services from HNA Group (May)
- PSP Investments on its investment alongside Silver Lake Partners on the £2.2bn recommended cash offer for ZPG plc (May)
- ION Investment Group Limited (in which The Carlyle Group is a shareholder) on the £1.5bn recommended cash offer for the entire issued, and to be issued, ordinary share capital of Fidessa group plc (April)
- Advent International Corporation on the £1bn recommended cash offer for Laird plc (April)