Francisco Partners in $90m Australian deal

The San Francisco firm is backing the growth and acquisition plans of Aconex, an online document management company, in one of the largest Australian private equity deals of 2008.

Francisco Partners has invested A$107.5 million ($90 million; €62 million) in Australia’s Aconex, an online document management company focused on servicing the construction, engineering and facilities management industries. The size of the stake acquired was not disclosed.

Aconex has devised a system which uses the internet to allow for collaboration of documents and facilitates communication. Its product allows users to create, store, search and archive documents and correspondence related to a development project. Aconex has about 5,500 projects across more than 65 countries across Asia, Africa, the Middle East, Europe and North America.

Francisco's investment will be used to fund acquisitions that widen the company’s geographic reach, its entry into new markets and product development. The investment in the product development division will lead to the creation of 50 new jobs in the company’s software engineering team, Aconex said in a statement.

Francisco makes investments with transaction values ranging between $25 million and $2 billion exclusively in technology and technology-enabled companies. The firm has committed about $5 billion in such businesses since 1999.

In May last year, Francisco acquired Mincom, an Australian software and service provider to asset intensive industries, for A$315 million.