In 2018, TA Associates invested a record $2.8 billion in new portfolio companies (more than double the $1.3 billion the firm invested the previous year), celebrated its 50th anniversary and completed its 500th investment, earning the firm Mergers & Acquisitions' 2018 M&A Mid-Market Award for Private Equity Firm of the Year. Based in Boston and Menlo Park, California, TA is currently investing out of its 12th flagship fund, which closed on a reported $5.3 billion in 2015. New investments were made in 17 companies across the globe, compared with 14 the previous year. The firm achieved $3.1 billion in liquidity through numerous exits (both full and partial), initial public offerings and recapitalizations. Internally, TA was active on the hiring front, and a significant number of staff achieved promotions. TA's Ethan Liebermann is one of Mergers & Acquisitions' 11 Rising Stars of Private Equity.
Nurtured portfolio companies
The firm engaged with more than 60 of its active portfolio companies in a variety of initiatives, including sourcing accretive acquisitions and new talent, managing and negotiating capital raisings and launching revenue growth and performance improvement projects. Some stats that demonstrate TA’s active support of portfolio companies include: 66 accretive acquisitions, of which more than 40 percent were sourced by TA; 79 senior management hires, of which nearly 30 percent were sourced by TA; 37 new independent board member appointments, of which more than one-third were sourced by TA; 78 financings; numerous revenue growth and performance improvement projects, such as the redesign of sales engines, pricing optimization studies, integration of adjacent market products, expansion into new geographic markets and streamlining decision-making processes. For more on TA's investment strategy, read our interview with TA managing partner Ajit Nedungadi: You’re either working a live deal, or hunting for the next one, at TA Associates.
TA formed a strategic partnership with Athena Alliance, a non-profit organization dedicated to helping more women attain board seats. TA says it is the first private equity sponsor to work with the group. Through the partnership, TA Associates’ portfolio companies have the opportunity to offer their senior women leaders access to personal development coaching from the organization to prepare them for a board director role. In addition, TA will seek to leverage Athena’s network of female leaders to help strengthen and diversify the boardrooms of the PE firm’s portfolio companies around the world.
· Invested in Global Software Inc. and combined it with Insightsoftware.com International, with the aim of creating a world-class ERP reporting and corporate performance management company under the name Insightsoftware.
· Invested in Merian Global Investors, the rebranded single-strategy asset management business of Old Mutual Global Investors.
· Sold Amplify Snack Brands (NYSE: BETR), in which TA invested in 2014 and which completed its IPO in 2015, to The Hershey Co. (NYSE: HSY) for $1.6 billion.
· MAV Beauty Brands, a global personal cae company in Canada in which TA invested in 2016, completed its IPO on the Toronto Stock Exchange (TSX: MAV).