Bridgepoint in €300m software deal as fund close looms

The firm, which is currently raising its fifth fund, is likely to reach its €4bn hard-cap in the first quarter of this year

Bridgepoint, a pan-European focused firm, has acquired eFront, a France-based software provider, from Francisco Partners, a technology-focused private equity firm for €300 million.

eFront, which was founded in 1999, provides software solutions to the financial services industry, specialising in enterprise risk management and alternative investments. It serves more than 700 customers and 100,000 users in 40 countries, including some of the largest companies in the private equity, real estate investment, banking and insurance sectors.

eFront’s suite of solutions cover back office including fund administration and fund accounting, middle office portfolio monitoring and investor portal, and front office including CRM, fundraising and deal pipeline monitoring.

The company’s core market is forecast to grow at double-digit rates, as underlying markets grow and the increasingly complex alternative investment funds scale, institutionalise and face an increasing regulatory burden.

In 2006 eFront listed on the Alternext Paris market of NYSE Euronext (ALEFT) and was taken private in 2011 by Francisco Partners. The firm typically invests in transaction values ranging from $50 million to over $2 billion.

“We will work with management to strengthen eFront’s market share, target new customers, enlarge its product offering and assist it in expanding into new geographies and asset classes,” Xavier Robert, partner of Bridgepoint, said in the statement.

The acquisition will be the last investment from the firm’s €4.84 billion Bridgepoint Europe IV. Debt for the transaction was provided by Babson Capital, ING, HSBC and Bank of Ireland, according to a statement.

The firm is currently in market with Bridgepoint Europe V, which has a €3.5 billion target and a €4 billion hard-cap.

Bridgepoint has so far amassed more than €3.5 billion for the vehicle and is expected to hit its hard-cap in the first quarter of this year, a source with knowledge of the matter told PEI.

Bridgepoint declined to comment on fundraising.