Apax offers $600m for Norwegian IT business

The UK-based firm is seeking to delist Nordic IT services provider EVRY

Apax Partners has put in a bid to acquire Norwegian IT services provider EVRY ASA for NOK 4.27 billion (€486 million; $598 million).

The UK-based firm is offering NOK 16.00 per share for the company, which represents a premium of 53 percent to the volume weighted average share price for the six month period to 27 August 2014, when EVRY announced a structured process to consider “strategic opportunities”.

Apax made the investment from Fund VIII, a $7.5 billion vehicle which closed in June 2013.

According to a statement from Apax, EVRY’s board of directors has unanimously decided to recommend its shareholders accept the offer. Posten Norge and Telenor Business Partner Invest, which own a combined 70.24 percent of EVRY shares, have said they will accept the offer, on certain conditions, as has Folketrygdfondet, a public company which manages the Government Pension Fund Norway, which owns 3.15 percent of the shares.

Headquartered in at Fornebu in Bærum, Norway, EVRY is listed on Oslo Børs and reports annual turnover of nearly NOK 13 billion. With 10,000 employees, the company operates in 50 Nordic towns and cities. If Apax succeeds in acquiring the company, it will seek to have it delisted.

Apax will provide EVRY with financial backing, expertise, and support for investments and acquisitions, backing its “transformation to offer competitive next generation cloud-based IT operations and to pursue accretive M&A opportunities”, the firm said.

This is Apax’s third IT deal in recent months. In October the firm agreed to acquire Exact Holding, a Dutch software business, for €32 per share in a deal valuing the company at €730 million. In August Apax acquired Answers Corporate, a US-based provider of cloud-based solutions, form Summit Partners, TA Associated, and founder shareholders.

ABG Sundal Collier acted as financial advisor to EVRY, while Apax received financial advice from Bank of America Merrill Lynch and DNB Markets, and legal advice from Clifford Chance and Wiersholm.