The Blackstone Group has appointed Mark Woodward as a senior advisor. Woodward comes with more than 30 years of experience in the information technology sector, with 23 years in sales and marketing and general management.
The hire underlines the growth of large buyout opportunities in a mature market, a trend initiated by the $11.3 billion public to private of Sungard in 2005.
Since then there have been a spate of ever larger technology buyouts including KKR $29 billion acquisition of First Data, an electronic payments business.
Global mergers and acquisitions levels in the technology sector broke through the €100bn barrier in 2006 for the first time since the height of the 2000 M&A boom, driven by resurgent corporate acquisition activity and renewed private equity interest in the sector, according to analysis by PricewaterhouseCoopers.
Woodward will be responsible primarily for sourcing and evaluating software and information technology-related transactions, and will be based in the Bay Area on the US west coast.
Most recently Woodward was the president and chief executive of Serena Software where he led the company through an extensive growth period.
Woodward directed Serena through several acquisitions and streamlined many complex infrastructure integration systems resulting in Serena becoming among the most profitable software companies in its class, Blackstone said.
Before Serena he was the senior vice president of sales and marketing at Live Picture where he created a multi-channel sales organisation.