Earlier this year, Visma’s investors sought to sell as much as 30% of the leading software and BPO services business to new backers before the COVID-19 pandemic put a halt to those plans.
Now rumors are circulating that investors — including U.K.-based private equity firm Hg — are in talks to sell up to 20% of their stake in the company. Bloomberg reported that such a move could value the Norwegian software company upwards of $10 billion. According to one source, Visma was reported to be “targeting a select group of potential buyers and are unlikely to hold a formal auction process."
Sources also revealed that Bank of America and Goldman Sachs Group were tapped last year to help manage the stake sale.
Hg initially invested in Visma in 2006, when it helped take the company off the Oslo stock exchange and privatize it at a valuation of about $450 million. Hg represented 41% of the equity, alongside GIC, Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund, Montagu, and ICG, who hold minority stakes.
Hg is one of Europe’s largest private software investors. In 2019, it invested a further €640 million in Visma. Hg's other investments include A-Plan Group, Mitratech, Traceone, Litera, The Access Group, Achilles, and more.
On August 20, Sky News reported that U.S.-based investment firms TPG and Warburg Pincus are slated to become the latest of Visma’s shareholders. Sources revealed that the deal was led by Hg with a capital commitment of around $2 billion. While the news hasn’t been officially announced, sources also report that new investors TPG and Warburg Pincus have invested substantially smaller sums of several hundred million dollars each.
Visma is a leading provider of mission-critical business software to SMBs in Northern Europe. The company, which has a client base of over 600,000 enterprises, offers services that span accounting, resource planning, payroll software, and transaction process outsourcing such as debt collection and procurement services.
This year, Visma has enjoyed an increase in revenue of 26.6% in Q2, reaching a total of $528 million, thanks to the continued high pace of acquisitions and new cloud customers.