CVC Closes $1B Fund to Back Mid-Market Tech Companies

CVC Capital Partners, the London private equity and investment advisory firm, has closed its CVC Growth Partners middle-market fund at $1 billion in investor commitments.

The fund has made two tech investments so far. Earlier in February, CVC acquired Wireless Logic of Buckinghamshire, U.K., from ECI Partners, a London private equity firm that invests in middle-market companies. Wireless Logic provides wireless connections from devices, other than mobile phones, to other devices or to computer networks. For example, a trucking company can track its vehicles remotely using Wireless Logic’s products and services.

In December 2015, CVC announced it would make an $80 million growth equity investment in Kount Inc. of Boise, Idaho, which provides e-commerce and mobile-devices fraud detection software for the retail, gaming and financial services sectors.

Cybersecurity continues to makes headlines with news of data breaches and online hacking targeting large companies and institutions, so has it become a noted sector for middle market M&A. Mergers & Acquisitions recently hosted a webinar on how cybersecurity threats are driving deals. Panelists included: Eric Feldman, chief information officer, the Riverside Co.; Jason Kaufman, head of Chertoff Capital, the Chertoff Group; and Scott Stevens, co-head of IT security, William Blair & Co. View the webinar, sponsored by Citrix ShareFile.

Overall, CVC Capital has raised $79 billion in commitments since the firm began in 1981, making more than 300 investments. CVC reports that its Growth Partners fund will target primarily high-growth companies in software and technology services sectors in North America and Europe, with an investment size of $50 million to $200 million. The firm’s initial fundraising target for the fund was $750 million, and it includes a “sidecar” vehicle for direct co-investments. Growth Partners focuses on software, could computing, managed services, cloud computing, mobility, payments, security, financial technology, healthcare information technology and other tech-enabled business services.

Deal flow in the technology, media and telecommunications (TMT) sector has remained robust despite a decline in overall M&A activity, but that may changing, at least in the short term, according to Mergers & Acquisitions’ Mid-Market Pulse (MMP), published in partnership with RSM LLP (formerly McGladrey). Participants on our monthly surveys recently lowered their 3-month outlook for the sector, suggesting that even healthy sectors may take a hit in the slowdown of 2016.

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