GTCR re-teams with former VeriFone CEO

The mid-market firm plans to invest $450m alongside Douglas Bergeron, CEO of former GTCR portfolio company VeriFone, to acquire financial technology companies.

GTCR has formed a $500 million partnership with Douglas Bergeron, former chief executive officer of VeriFone, to form Opus Global Holdings, a platform to acquire financial technology companies. 

GTCR plans to invest up to $450 million of equity to support the strategy, with Bergeron contributing the other $50 million. GTCR first partnered with Bergeron in 2002 to acquire VeriFone. The firm floated the payments technology company in 2005 for $230 million. 

Opus marks the latest partnership from GTCR’s “Leader Strategy”, where the firm backs a CEO and acquires several businesses or a single company in a specific industry.  

“GTCR originates many of its investments by partnering with a management team ahead of identifying an acquisition target,” GTCR principal Collin Roche told Private Equity International. “We seek to partner with those types of proven managers and then we identify businesses that would fit their strategy. This also makes us more of an industry buyer, as we can often pursue acquisition targets that would not be appropriate for other private equity firms.”

GTCR does not have a set timeline for investing the $500 million, Roche added.

“We are somewhat opportunistic and have the flexibility to acquire something large or to invest in a series of smaller investments,” he said.

In addition to acting as CEO of VeriFone, Bergeron holds a board seat at GTCR portfolio company Fundtech, a financial technology company in which Bergeron is a co-investor. Prior to leading VeriFone, Bergeron was CEO of SunGard Brokerage Systems and president of SunGard Futures Systems, part of multinational software and technology services company SunGard Data Systems.

GTCR launched its Fund XI earlier this year with a $3.25 billion target. The firm is still investing its Fund X, which closed on $3.25 billion in February 2011.