Permira nears $1.5bn US tech buyout

Permira is close to sealing its latest investment in the US, having tabled a binding $1.5bn offer for software company Genesys.

Permira has made a binding offer to acquire customer service software developer Genesys from its listed parent Alcatel-Lucent worth $1.5 billion, according to a statement from the firm.

If successful, the deal will be Permira’s fifth in the US, based on details of its investments given on the firm's website. Its previous investments include satellite group Intelsat, personal protection equipment-maker Aearo Technologies, semiconductor manufacturer Freescale, and containment business BakerCorp International. Freescale and BakerCorp are still held within the Permira portfolio.

Speaking to Private Equity International earlier this month, co-managing partner Kurt Björklund said the firm’s New York office was established nine years ago, which he claimed made the firm the longest-established of the major European players in the US. Permira also opened an office in Menlo Park, California, in 2008 to bolster its US presence and support its TMT sector team.

Permira has partnered with Technology Crossover Ventures for its bid for Genesys, with additional co-investments from Permira LPs, according to the firm.

Brian Ruder, a partner at Permira’s Menlo Park office from which the deal was led, said in a statement: “Genesys is widely recognised as one of the world’s leading providers of customer service software and contact centre solutions. With an exceptional brand, differentiated technologies and a blue-chip customer base, Genesys is well-positioned to continue to take advantage of the positive trends in its expanding markets.”

The deal is now subject to review by the Committee of Foreign Investment in the US, together with other regulatory approvals. It is expected to close by the end of the year, or in early 2012, the firm said.