Maven exits CRM provider ProspectSoft; IK Partners enters agreement to sell LINXIS Group

ProspectSoft deal will be a partial exit for Maven, which retains interest in Zing division

Happy Friday Eurohubsters, it’s Craig McGlashan with the Dealflow.

We’ve had a healthy run of acquisitions over the last week, but it looks like exits are the order of the day as we head into the weekend.

Partial exit. Maven Capital Partners announced on Thursday its exit from CRM software provider ProspectSoft through a sale to trade acquirer The Access Group. The sale has generated an initial 2.0x return for Maven Investor Partners, and it has potential to increase up to 2.9x, dependent on certain conditions being met through an earnout agreement.

ProspectSoft is a Camberley, UK-based CRM software provider and an ecommerce company founded in 2000.

Bristol-headquartered Maven originally led the management buyout of ProspectSoft in 2017 with the aim to drive commercial traction. The buyer, The Access Group, is based in Loughborough in the UK and is a business management software provider.

The transaction represents a partial exit, as the Zing division, a consulting partner of Twilio, does not form part of the exit. Zing operates with Twilio’s cloud communications platform to optimise workflows. Maven investors have retained their interests in Zing following a business demerger.

“The sale of ProspectSoft represents a good return for our investors,” said Tom Purkis, partner at Maven. “The business has performed well in recent years through continued investment in the product, optimising the strategy and the hard work and dedication of the management team. It has been great to see the SaaS product achieve strong growth in so many different markets.”

Cashing out. We reported yesterday that IK Partners has entered into a put option agreement to sell its stake in LINXIS Group to Hillenbrand.

Headquartered in Nantes, LINXIS is a global supplier of industrial processing equipment and automation products for the food, pharma and cosmetic industries. The group has six brands under its umbrella: VMI, Diosna, Shaffer, Shick Esteve, Unifiller and Bakon.

London-based IK acquired LINXIS from Equistone in October 2017 and has since completed multiple add-on acquisitions: Unifiller in 2018 and Laramore, Bakon and Shaffer in 2021.

The buyer, Hillenbrand, is a Batesville, Indiana-based global industrial company operating in over 40 countries.

“It has been a pleasure working with the team at LINXIS for the past five years,” said Rémi Buttiaux, managing partner at IK and advisor to the IK VIII Fund. “Through a selective acquisition strategy and the development of several purchasing and aftersales initiatives, we were able to support the excellent management team led by Tim Cook (CEO) and Didier Soumet (Chairman) and drive significant growth for the business.”

Environmental trends. There’s been plenty of deals with an environmental element over the last few weeks in Europe. They’ve ranged from Abris Capital Partners’ portfolio company GreenGroup this week announcing it had bought SIGAD, a Romanian developer of environmental reporting software, to One Equity Partners revealing it had acquired DESMI, a manufacturer of pumps, pumping systems and environmental cleaning equipment, in June.

There’s been healthy dealflow in this sector in the US too, and our colleague on PE Hub Obey Martin Manayiti wrote on Thursday an in-depth look at an acquisition by Enercon, an engineering and environmental services firm backed by AE Industrial Partners. It announced earlier this month the purchase of Ardent Environmental Group, a provider of environmental site assessments, remediation, monitoring and other services.

That’s it from us – have a great weekend everyone and speak to you on Monday.