Francisco Partners to buy Ex Libris for reported $62m

The private equity firm has agreed to buy venture-backed Israeli software company Ex Libris for $62m, according to an Israeli newspaper.

Ex Libris, an Israeli software provider for libraries, and Menlo Park, California-based private equity firm Francisco Partners have reached a deal for Francisco to buy Ex Libris. Terms were not disclosed in the announcement, but according to a report from the Israeli newspaper Haaretz, the deal is valued at $62 million (€48.7 million).

The software maker has received backing from Israeli venture capital funds, including Walden Israel Venture Capital and Tamar Ventures. The company is also partially owned by the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, where the software maker started in 1983. All will receive significant returns in the acquisition deal, with Walden reportedly getting back four times its investment.

Ex Libris is a software provider to libraries worldwide, including four of the five largest.  It has 2,500 customers in 62 countries, including 70 of the top 100 universities worldwide and 45 of the top 50 universities in North America. The company is expected to report $40 million in revenue this year.

Francisco plans to pursue a growth strategy with the company. “Financially strong and with consistently strong growth, Ex Libris is well positioned to make strategic acquisitions and to expand into new geographical markets,” said Andrew Gray, a principal at Francisco, in a statement. Gray also said that this acquisition is expected to be “the first of many” by Francisco in the Israeli technology sector.

Earlier this week, Francisco also announced an agreement to acquire WatchGuard Technologies, a Seattle-based Internet security software and hardware developer, for $151 million in cash.