Battery outlines fleet management roadmap; Sweet deal for Advent portfolio firm

Advent International portfolio company IRCA has started talks to acquire Kerry Group’s Sweet Ingredients Portfolio for €500 million.

Good morning Eurohubsters, Craig McGlashan here with the opening Dealflow of the week.

I hope you all had good weekends. Today we have a deep dive into a recent deal in fleet management software by Battery Ventures, a big play in the food sector by an Advent portfolio company and an add-on by a Keensight-owned tech company.

Pooling resources. We kick the week off with an in-depth look at Battery Ventures’ acquisition of two fleet management software providers, Vimcar and Avrios, earlier this month.

With the firms’ largest footprint in DACH – Vimcar is headquartered in Berlin and Avrios in Zurich – and some international business in Italy and the UK, Battery plans to create a “pan-European champion” as the first leg of its plan, Battery partner Zak Ewen told PE Hub Europe.

Battery made a combined €200 million investment, PE Hub Europe understands, with management still involved in both firms. Vimcar and Avrios were cashflow positive at the end of 2022, having been founded in 2013 and 2015, respectively.

The firms together have over 250 employees and tens of thousands of customers in construction, technical field services, healthcare, manufacturing, government and other industries.

“Vehicles are a fact of life for those businesses and they need software to manage what’s become a pretty big and complex cost,” said Ewen. “You have to know that your drivers are compliant. You have to manage fines, you have to manage damages and repairs, insurance policies, end of life for leases. The minute you have 10, 20, 30 plus vehicles, which is not huge in the grand scheme of things, it starts to get pretty complicated.”

You can read the full interview with Ewen here. We look at areas where further acquisitions could be made, as well as the firms’ position on the crossover point between venture capital and private equity.

For more on this sector, make sure to read about Carlyle’s recent deal for Groupe Lacour.

Also check out our recent interview with Ewen on his promotion to partner and his outlook for European private equity in the tech sector.

Sweetened deal. If anyone’s on a healthy living mission this January then it might be best to look away for this next deal.

Advent International portfolio company IRCA has started talks to acquire Kerry Group’s Sweet Ingredients Portfolio for €500 million, comprising an initial cash consideration of €375 million and a €125 million interest bearing vendor loan note.

Sweet Ingredients is a producer of sweet and cereal items with a focus on Europe and the US. It operates six locations across the UK, the Netherlands, Germany and France in addition to four production facilities in the US (in Illinois, Kansas, Missouri, and California).

This merger will likely result in €1 billion in revenues, a global presence, and a sizable footprint in the US, the firms said.

If you’ve got a sweet tooth, then you can read more about the deal here, including Sweet Ingredients’ EBITDA and revenues.

Tech move. Keensight Capital portfolio firm the inherent Group has acquired Equadex, a SME data server and cloud services firm.

Equadex, headquartered in Toulouse, offers IT support at all levels to over 500 small and medium-sized businesses.

Franck Marty, president, and founder of Equadex, will become director of the new Occitania region of adista.

“The Equadex team will join the group’s direct sales activity under the adista brand,” said Franck Marty, president, and founder of Equadex. “Our employees will benefit from new synergies, and our customers will gain an expanded service offering.”

Read more on the deal, including some revenue info, here.

Inherent – formerly known as adista – made another add-on back in November, picking up French firm Cyres. Check out our coverage of that deal here.

That’s it from me – I’ll be back with you tomorrow.