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  • 214 and counting... Fresh insights from our tech acquirer database!

214 and counting... Fresh insights from our tech acquirer database!

Who are the most active acquirers, where are they based - and who's backed them?

One of the many perks of being a Rollupeurope annual subscriber is the access to our serial acquirer database. We have been relentlessly updating and expanding it since Version 1.0, in September 2023

Today, the list includes 214 names across software; consultancies; MSPs; media - and more. Concurrently we have added columns for company primers (links to Rollupeurope and external resources) and lender information.

As we continue to expand both the coverage and the number data points, please help us refine the roadmap:

Which features should we prioritise in Q2/Q3?

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Before you dive into fresh database insights though, don’t forget to register for our next networking event in London, on 19 June. Join us at a stunning venue in central London for high power networking and fireside chats packed with intel “from the field”. 

We are capping attendees at 100, so hurry! 

Many thanks to our sponsors Sourcescrub and Camino Search

North American and British aggregators dominate rankings…

…representing a whopping 62% of the sample, followed by Germany; and the Nordics (10% each). Perhaps unsurprising given the prevalence of Canadian strategics and “Anglo-Saxon” PE firms like Hg Capital and TA (more on that below). 

With that said, it is rather striking that the Nordics (combined pop. 25M) host 3x more “indigenous” tech aggregators than France (pop. 68M). Then again, this is changing, with several new VMS aggregators actively seeking acquisitions in France. 

Thinking of starting a software HoldCo? Think again!

Speaking of which: out of all aggregators that we track, 27% were founded in the last four years. This figure rises to 29% for all software acquirers. Drilling down even more, among software HoldCos the proportion of newcomers is higher still, at almost half (25 out of 53)! 

Anecdotally, we are aware of about a dozen HoldCos either seeking funding, or hunting for their first acquisition right now. All the more important to have a differentiated investment thesis and a strong pipeline! 

Permanent capital or not, Private Equity calls the shots

PE backed companies represent 65% of the sample. Although traditionally focused on buy & build situations, lately they have been allocating galore to permanent equity vehicles, including Big Band (US - Talisman, Parker Gale); Evefield (Europe - Aquiline); Invincible (Europe - Strada); Confirm (Nordics - Abry); and others. 

The most active sponsors - those with 4+ platforms are:

Who are the lenders?

We have identified lenders and debt terms for 1/3 of all companies. The proportion of firms that have outstanding debt is of course a lot higher, over 80%, we just haven’t got round gathering all the data…yet.  

Based on the current sample, the most active lenders all hail from the US:

These players prefer larger ($100M+ revenue), sponsor backed aggregators. In Europe they compete against, and cooperate with firms such as ICG, Arcmont and Ture Invest. 

The smaller, and non-sponsor backed is a hodgepodge of regional banks (National Bank of Canada; Intesa in Italy; Shawbrook in the UK; DNB in the Nordics etc.); venture / growth debt firms (Atempo, Columbia Lake, Coventure, TriplePoint). 

For a deep dive on the aggregator debt landscape, check out this article

The good news is, the investors’ appetite for high quality aggregators remains unabated. Contact Rollupeurope if you are looking for debt financing, and we will put you in touch with our trusted broker.