ACL Raises $500 Million from Norwest Equity Partners

Vancouver-based anti-fraud software provider ACL Services Ltd. has announced a new $50 million investment from Palo Alto, Calif.-based private equity firm Norwest Venture Partners. The funding marks the 30-year-old firm’s first institutional funding in its history.

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ACL, which provides software for fraud detection and prevention and risk management, has spent the recent years transforming from a seller of desktop-based products to a cloud-based subscription provider.

The SaaS provider helps governments and some of the world’s largest companies quantify risk, reduce fraud and optimize performance. The new minority investment will be leveraged to accelerate ACL’s consolidation of the $36 billion integrated risk and performance software market.

“Today's announcement is validation of the transformation we have already driven and a strong vote of confidence in our belief that we are best positioned to dominate the massive and underserved market for risk and performance management software,” said ACL’s CEO and President Laurie Schultz in a press release. Schultz indicated that the fast-growing company has doubled its SaaS Governance, Risk Management and Compliance (GRC) business in each of the last five years. The software provider, which is believed to generate annual revenue in the range of $50 million, has been increasing sales by 20% to 40% a year.

“We’re attempting to do what did,” said ACL’s Chief Product Officer Dan Zitting. Just as the CRM leader brought customer service, sales and marketing software onto one platform, ACL hopes to do the same thing with audit, risk management and compliance. Under its new CEO who took the helm in 2011, the company has converted about 90% of approximately 8,000 active desktop software customers to its monthly cloud-based subscription offering.

ACL works with over 7,100 existing customers in 140 countries. The industry innovator is an eight-time winner of the GRC 20/20 GRC Technology Awards in categories such as technology innovation, user experience and customer value realization.

Norwest is a leading Silicon Valley-based venture capital and growth equity firm which manages over $6 billion in capital. It targets early to late stage companies across segments, particularly consumer, enterprise and healthcare.