Arctos goes for Aston Martin Aramco Cognizant F1 Team

Advent International makes fintech play.

Today, we are kicking things off with an eye-catching private equity deal in the sports sector as we continue to see increasing appetite on both sides of the pitch. Yesterday, we reported US private equity firm Arctos Partners signing an agreement to buy a minority stake in a formula racing team.

Switching sectors, we have a deal to report in fintech, a sector that has seen a fair amount of private equity activity in 2023. This involves Advent International agreeing to buy a UK payment service provider.

Lastly, I will turn your attention to the ongoing take-private frenzy as there was a development in HIG Capital’s bid for a UK mail and logistics company.

Teaming up 

Sport, a sector that was viewed with caution, is now garnering private equity firms’ attention as we have reported a flurry of deals in the sector this year. Notably, US private equity firms have shown growing interest in sports brands in the UK.

We saw one such deal yesterday with Arctos Partners agreeing to invest in Aston Martin Aramco Cognizant Formula One Team. The transaction values the team at £1 billion ($1.2 billion; €1.1 billion), according to The Financial Times.

Aston Martin Aramco Cognizant Formula One Team is based in Northamptonshire, England.

This transaction will give Arctos ownership of a minority shareholding in AMR Holdings, the team’s holding company.

“This investment is consistent with our firm’s strategy, which focuses on backing leading sports brands across North America and Europe,” said David O’Connor, managing partner, Arctos. “We will provide extensive resources to enhance Aston Martin Aramco Cognizant Formula One Team’s reach and brand, including industry intelligence sourced from our proprietary quantitative research and data science platform.”

The agreement, which was announced on the eve of the Las Vegas Grand Prix, confirms the increasing appeal of the Aston Martin Aramco Cognizant Formula One Team during an unprecedented period of growth and popularity of F1, especially in the US, according to a release.

For more on sports, take a look at this list of private equity-backed deals in the sector and Craig McGlashan’s deep dive into LBK Capital’s acquisition of US Triestina Calcio 1918.

Payment deal

Next up is a fintech deal. There is a growing inclination towards adopting fintech services as people become more and more dependent on technology. Seems like private equity firms are also eyeing this opportunity.

Confirming this interest, we have a new deal to report. Advent International has agreed to acquire myPOS, a payments service provider, through its newly formed payments and technology platform AI Circle.

The transaction is expected to value myPOS at around €500 million, according to Reuters.

Advent declined to comment when approached by PE Hub Europe.

London-based myPOS serves around 170,000 merchants in continental Europe across multiple sectors – including food & beverages, professional services, retail and transportation.

Laurent Le Moal, former CEO of PayU and VP at PayPal, has joined as chairman of Circle.

Circle will support myPOS’s current management team in growing the customer base while preserving the differentiated business model and the competitive value proposition, according to a release.

The firm aims “to create a truly differentiated digital platform with the ambition to be both market leading and able to support the real economy by helping smaller businesses to flourish” said Fabio Cali, director at Advent.

For more on fintech, check out this listicle I compiled on the sector.

Offer confirmed 

On the take-privates front, we have a new update in HIG Capital’s take-private bid for UK mail and logistics company DX Group, which was announced in early September.

HIG has now confirmed its cash offer for DX Group at 48.5p per share.

The acquisition will value DX’s entire issued and to be issued share capital at around £315 million ($391 million; €360 million).

The purchase price represents a premium of around 32.9 percent to the closing price per DX share of 36.5 pence, 34.8 percent to the volume weighted average closing price per DX share of 36 pence for the one-month period, 67 percent to the volume weighted average closing price per DX share of 29 pence for the 12-month period ended on 8 September, the last business day prior to the date of the commencement of the offer period, according to a release.

Gatemore Capital Management is the largest shareholder in DX Group with 19 percent of outstanding shares. The purchase price of 48.5p represents 6x Gatemore’s average cost in DX, according to a source familiar with the matter.

“We are pleased to have played a central role in the rescue of DX and in working closely with Lloyd Dunn and his team to oversee an exceptional turnaround and build DX into a market leader,” said Liad Meidar, managing partner of Gatemore.

For more on background, check out our coverage.