Netherlands-based Unit4, a software company that designs and delivers enterprise software and ERP applications, will be acquired by growth private equity firm TA Associates, in a deal valued at more than $2B (approx €1.67B). Private markets firm, Partners Group, will be investing alongside TA, on behalf of its clients.
Unit4 was acquired by Advent International in 2014 for around €1.2B. Advent International, the current majority shareholder in Unit4, will exit its stake in the company.
The acquisition is expected to close in the early summer of 2021. Mike Ettling, the current CEO of Unit4, will continue to lead the company, supported by the existing management team.
What does Unit4 offer?
Unit4 was founded in 1980 by Chris Ouwinga and listed on the Amsterdam Stock Exchange in 1998. Currently, the company is led by CEO Mike Ettling, former president of SAP SuccessFactors and CEO of NGA Human Resources.
Unit4 is a software company that designs and delivers enterprise software and ERP applications and related professional services for people in services organisations, with a special focus on the professional services, education, public services, and not-for-profit sectors.
Unit4 claims it is best known for its people experience suite including Unit4 ERP, Unit4 Financials, Unit4 FP&A, Unit4 Talent Management, and Unit4 Student Management.
In 2015, the company announced a partnership with Microsoft to build self-driving business applications on the Microsoft Azure cloud. Its software is available in either cloud or on-premises setups.
Besides the Netherlands, the company has offices in 26 countries across Europe, North America, the Asia-Pacific region, and Africa.
The aim of this acquisition
Unit4 and TA will partner to further accelerate the company’s vision of “people-centric ERP” (Enterprise Resource Planning) for mid-market enterprise organisations.
This partnership with TA will help Unit4 address the specific challenges and requirements of organisations in people-based services industries including professional services, public sector, nonprofit and higher education, globally.
Speaking on the development, Mike Ettling, CEO of Unit4, says, “Our partnership with TA and Partners Group couldn’t come at a better time. With the launch of ERPx, our next-generation cloud-native ERP platform, expansion of our global partner ecosystem, the creation of a strong and viable customer community with Community 4U, and deeper “people” investment in our core and growth markets, Unit4 is poised to see dramatic growth through this next phase of our journey.”
He further adds, “Our customers have expressed a need for rapid innovation, not just efficiencies, to support their growth aspirations while continuing to navigate the headwinds of the global pandemic. We believe our game-changing software and people-first, services-based mindset will help our customers thrive as the market begins to regain its momentum.”
About TA Associates and Partners Group
TA Associates is a growth private equity firm, focused on targeted sectors within five industries – technology, healthcare, financial services, consumer, and business services. The firm invests in profitable, growing companies with opportunities for sustained growth, and has invested in more than 500 companies around the world. TA has raised $33.5B (approx €28.11B) in capital since its founding in 1968 and is committing to new investments at the pace of over $3B (approx €2.51B) every year.
As for Partners Group, it is a global private markets investment manager. Since 1996, the firm has invested over $145B (approx €121.70B) in private equity, private real estate, private debt, and private infrastructure on behalf of its clients globally. With over $109B (approx €91.48B) in assets under management, Partners Group serves a broad range of institutional investors, sovereign wealth funds, family offices, and private individuals globally. It has been listed on the SIX Swiss Exchange since 2006.