Apollo Global Management is set to invest $1.75bn in Cerberus-backed Albertsons, an operator of the chain of grocery stores. The transaction is expected to close by June 15, 2020, subject to customary closing conditions.
“Apollo knows our industry and business model well, given its significant prior history of successful investments in the grocery sector. We believe the investment led by the Apollo Funds represents a vote of confidence in both our business and our long-term strategy. We are also proud to have the continued support of our owners, led by Cerberus Capital Management. We appreciate their tremendous support over the years in operations, technology and financing as we have grown our business and our platform, and especially during the Covid-19 pandemic as we focus on the safety and well-being of our associates, customers and communities," Vivek Sankaran, Albertsons President and Chief Executive Officer.
Albertsons is advised by Bank of America Merrill Lynch, Citigroup, Credit Suisse, Goldman Sachs, JP Morgan, PJT Partners, Greenberg Traurig and Schulte Roth & Zabel. Apollo Global Management is advised by Barclays, Gibson Dunn & Crutcher, Morgan Lewis & Bockius and Paul Weiss Rifkind Wharton & Garrison.
Forescout Technologies, the provider of device visibility and control services, filed for litigation against Advent International, claiming the latter violated the terms of their merger agreement.
On May 15 Advent International notified Forescout about the deal termination stating that "material adverse effect" occurred at Forescout. Forescout advocates that no such effect appeared in the company and opts for deal closure.
"We have satisfied all conditions to closing under our merger agreement, and a material adverse effect has not occurred. Advent is required to promptly complete the transaction. We are taking immediate action to enforce Forescout's rights and ensure that Advent fulfils its obligations. We are confident that the steps that we are taking are in the best interests of Forescout and its shareholders," Theresia Gouw, Forescout Board Chair.
Aurora Cannabis, a Canadian cannabinoids company, agreed to acquire Reliva, a seller of hemp-derived CBD products in the US, for $85m.
"We firmly believe that the combination with Reliva will create significant long-term value as Reliva provides us options to grow in hemp-derived CBD internationally. Similar to Aurora, Reliva has a strong entrepreneurial spirit and successful track record of transforming categories and creating growth brands," Michael Singer, Aurora Executive Chairman and Interim CEO.
Aurora Cannabis is advised by Cowen & Company and Paul Weiss Rifkind Wharton & Garrison. Relive is advised by Saul Ewing Arnstein & Lehr.
Newlight Partners, a private investment firm, completed the investment in Zing Health, a physician-led Medicare Advantage HMO plan designed for Medicare-eligible beneficiaries. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"Zing Health is a doctor-founded, mission-driven health plan focused on serving vulnerable populations who rely heavily on Medicare. Amid the current Covid-19 pandemic environment, where seniors find themselves most at risk, Zing Health’s mission is more important than ever. We anticipate investing up to $150m and we look forward to partnering with Eric and his experienced team to further the reach of Zing Health at this critical time," Srdjan Vukovic, Newlight Partner.
Zing Health was advised by Perkins Coie and Purpose Brand. Newlight Partners was advised by Willkie Farr & Gallagher and Gasthalter & Co.
Copley Equity Partners, a private investment firm that focuses on established businesses with significant growth prospects, completed a majority investment in Tourmaline Partners, an outsourced trading solutions firm. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"We have followed Tourmaline closely for several years and have been impressed with their long-term vision and global expansion. Tourmaline has captured lightning in a bottle, as changes across the trading landscape – from MiFID II-driven unbundling, to liquidity fragmentation and cost pressures – have led the buy side to seek outsourced and supplemental trading solutions to gain efficiencies and improve trading performance," Peter Trovato, Copley Equity Managing Partner.
Tourmaline Partners was advised by Ropes & Gray and Forefront Communications.
Smarsh, a provider of communications risk prevention services to the financial industry, agreed to acquire Entreda, a developer of integrated cybersecurity risk and compliance management software and services for the wealth management market. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"With the acquisition, Smarsh can now offer our customers cutting-edge device, network and user-level cybersecurity risk and compliance management capabilities," Brian Cramer, Smarsh CEO.
Entreda is advised by Haven Tower Group. Smarsh is advised by Lumina Communications.
Bain Capital Double Impact, a health & wellness-focused private equity firm, is set to invest in Broadstep Behavioral Health, a provider of programs and services to individuals with disabilities. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"I'm incredibly proud of our leadership team and our dedicated caregivers who have gone above and beyond to continuously improve outcomes and address the needs of the individuals we serve. We are excited to partner with Bain Capital Double Impact and to leverage their resources and support as we build new standards of care and expand through acquisitions and into complementary care services. We share the same mission to create better outcomes for a growing, underserved population that today lacks the residential and community-based programs and facilities that can empower personal growth," Lynn Mason, Broadstep President and CEO.
Broadstep Behavioral Health is advised by Stanton PRM.
North Square Investments, a multi-boutique investment manager, completed the acquisition of All Cap Value Fund from Advisory Research, an independent boutique asset manager based in Chicago. Financial terms were not disclosed.
“This mutual fund transaction and SMA/UMA marketing arrangement with North Square allows us to reach more financial intermediaries and effectively grow our assets under management,” Matthew Swaim, Advisory Research Executive Chairman and Managing Director.
North Square Investments was advised by PriceWeber.
Ally Bridge Group led a $120m funding round in Rapid Micro Biosystems, a provider of automated microbial detection technology for biopharmaceutical manufacturing.
"We expect to see strong adoption of the company’s products, as increasing numbers of biopharmaceutical companies seek to take advantage of leading-edge technologies to support manufacturing speed and capacity improvements, as well as ensuring quality to satisfy increasingly stringent regulatory requirements," Frank Yu, Ally Bridge Group Founder, CEO and CIO.
Rapid Micro Biosystems is advised by The Yates Network.
AllianceBernstein led a $400m funding round in Samsara Networks, a startup focused on internet-of-things technology. AllianceBernstein, Franklin Templeton, General Atlantic, Sands Capital Management and Warburg Pincus are new investors that participated in the round. Previous backers that invested again include Andreessen Horowitz, General Catalyst, Dragoneer Investment Group and Tiger Global Management.
“The deep economic impacts of Covid-19 have now become clear. We have a strong business with continued revenue growth, but must address the realities of the economic situation,” Lindsay McKinley, Samsara Networks spokeswoman.
Lineage Logistics, the world’s largest provider of temperature-controlled logistics solutions, agreed to acquire QSR and Casual Dining Distribution Business from Maines Paper & Food Service, an American foodservice distributor. Financial terms were not disclosed.
“To complete this acquisition in the midst of a worldwide pandemic while the nation is facing economic headwinds is extraordinary, but we continue to bet on America and are thrilled to further support our front line heroes in the food supply chain, like those at Lineage and Maines. We look forward to the opportunity to step up and help our customers stabilize their supply chain, preserve hundreds of jobs for hardworking Maines employees and ensure we continue to feed the world,” Greg Lehmkuhl, Lineage President & CEO.
Intel agreed to acquire Rivet Networks, a technology and products company focused on creating networking experience. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"Rivet Networks is a terrific complement to our existing Wi-Fi products and helps us further our vision of delivering PC platforms that power every person's greatest contribution. Rivet Networks' products deliver speed, intelligence and control for gamers and performance users. Its products maximize Wi-Fi bandwidth utilization and optimize the wireless network connection on your platform. In addition, Rivet Networks' products can also utilize the combination of Ethernet and Wi-Fi to prioritize traffic over both connections," Intel.
Financial Gravity Companies, a parent company of financial services companies, agreed to acquire Forta Financial Group, a Colorado-based broker-dealer. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"The Financial Gravity team combined with the Forta Financial team, along with all the new team members we are bringing in from other firms has created an incredible amount of talent that we continue to grow. We are preparing for great expansion during the next few years and are amazed at the momentum that has kicked in already," Scott Winters, Financial Gravity Companies Chairman & CEO.
Team Whistle, a global media company that includes Whistle, New Form and Vertical Networks, completed the acquisition of Tiny Horse, a premiere marketing services firm focused on helping streamers, networks, producers and advertisers. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"We're excited about the larger opportunities for our combined sales, marketing and production teams to not only deepen the relationship between Team Whistle's global audience and existing IP, but also offer this expertise and network to help streamers, brands and talent do the same," Kyle Young, Tiny Horse Managing Partner and Co-Founder.
Avtex to acquire CPI assets.
Avtex, a customer experience consulting and technology company, agreed to acquire the assets of Communications Products, an Indiana-based provider of contact centre and communication solutions. Specifically, Avtex decided to purchase CPI's portfolio of Genesys customers.
"The acquisition of CPI's contact centre business provides Avtex with expanded technical talent, geographic reach and progressive client base. CPI, along with Avtex, was one of the original partners of Genesys in 1997; they have a 12-year average tenure around the platform. Now more than ever, customer experience hubs, AI-enabled data analytics and single customer golden record are critical for organizations. Avtex will continue to be aggressive to expand our capabilities around these solutions, even during these market conditions for the benefit of our clients," George Demou, Avtex CEO.
Cohere Capital raised $200m for debut private equity fund. (FS)
Cohere Capital Partners, a Boston-based private equity firm focused exclusively on middle-market growth companies, announced the successful closing of its debut fund, Cohere Capital Fund I at $200m. The fund closed over its target and at its hard cap without the use of a placement agent.
"Cohere was founded on the philosophy that ensuring alignment among our stakeholders will enable us to achieve our common goal of building great and sustainable businesses. We are pleased to have the opportunity to bring our team's expertise and capital to support the founders, management teams, and companies in which we invest," Daniel Gedney Cohere Capital Co-Founder and Principal.
TA Associates-backed Netrisk, an online insurance brokerage firm in Hungary, agreed to acquire Klik, an online insurance broker, from Benson Oak Capital, a private equity firm. Financial terms were not disclosed.
“Klik has achieved a great deal since it was founded nine years ago, delivering impressive sales growth while consistently being the most innovative player in its local markets. I believe that the investment of a global private equity firm, such as TA Associates via Netrisk, is proof of the strength of our business and its continued importance in the Czech and Slovak insurance markets. Through the combination of our efforts and in partnership with a regional leader like Netrisk, I believe that we will be able to grow significantly in the coming years,” Andrew Fuchs, Klik Founder, CEO and Chairman.
TA Associates is advised by BackBay Communications. Netrisk is advised by Target Communications. Benson Oak Capital is advised by CORPIN and Weinhold.
Vaaka Partners, a private equity firm that helps medium-sized Finnish companies, completed the acquisition of a majority stake in Staria, a provider of accounting, HR and payroll services and robotic process automation. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"With the support of Vaaka Partners, we gain additional experience and expertise to our Board and financial resources to execute our international growth strategy. It has been inspiring to work together with Vaaka. The development of our growth plan has been supported by Vaaka's excellent industrial advisors who have a lot of complementary experience of accelerating the growth of international growth companies. We share the same vision and values with Vaaka, which has enabled us to build mutual trust," Juha Tommila, Staria founder and CEO.
Blarney Ventures, a Boston-based investment holding company with a focus on outsourcing, agreed to acquire SalesWorks, a London-based sales training and consulting company. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"The SalesWorks acquisition bolsters the BV portfolio and opens up a segment of the market that is very synergistic with our core offerings. We are excited to have Shabri as a partner, and aim to expand the SalesWorks platform in the European and North American markets while importing other BV companies to Europe," Matthew Iovanni, Blarney Ventures Managing Partner.
AddSecure, a European provider of premium solutions for secure data and critical communications, agreed to acquire Connexas Group, a provider of connected vehicle technology and fleet management solutions throughout the UK, EU, North America and Australia, from Horizon Capital, a London-based private equity firm. Financial terms were not disclosed.
The acquisition of Connexas enables AddSecure to establish a presence for transport and logistics in the UK market, and furthers AddSecure’s strategy of becoming a leading provider of Fleet and Transport Management solutions across Europe.
Private equity firms Charlesbank Capital Partners and Claridge Israel and Elbit Systems, an Israel-based international defense electronics company, agreed to invest $70m in Cyberbit, a provider of cyber range platforms for training cybersecurity professionals.
“We are experiencing record demand for our cyber range as organizations recognize the importance of real-world cyberattack simulation to assess and prepare their security teams. The investment from Charlesbank will allow us to solidify our position as a best-of-breed product and allow us to accelerate our global expansion,” Adi Dar, Cyberbit CEO.
Ares is looking to launch a $9bn European debt fund. (FS)
US-based Ares is set to launch a $9bn European debt fund to capitalize on markets hit by the economic slump, PE News reported. Competitors like Fortress Investment Group, Goldman Sachs Group and Apollo Global Management are already gathering resources to invest in distressed businesses.
“Based on our leadership position and the opportunity set in European direct lending, we currently expect that this fund could be the largest private commingled fund in our company’s history,” Michael Arougheti, Ares CEO and President.
Lufthansa in advanced talks for $10bn state rescue deal.
Lufthansa is in advanced talks over a €9bn ($10bn) state bailout that would see Germany take a 20% stake in its flagship airline, as countries battle to save an aviation industry hammered by the coronavirus pandemic.
Lufthansa said a deal would involve the government taking two seats on its supervisory board, but it would only exercise its full voting rights in exceptional circumstances, such as to protect the firm against a takeover.
"There are still some unresolved issues to be worked out. As soon as that is done, the management board could give its approval," Lufthansa spokesman.
Alpha Real Renewables to acquire a portfolio of operational wind turbines.
Alpha Real Renewables agreed to acquire the portfolio of eleven NIROC accredited wind projects. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"While the uncertainty around the future renewables policy in NI might be affecting new developments, the M&A market is buoyant – particularly where investors can access a portfolio of NIROC accredited assets, like this one. The growth of Alpha Real Renewables' portfolio, and the fifth acquisition that we've worked with them on, is representative of the wider market message – the market remains viable as we work towards achieving net-zero," Maria Connolly, TLT Head of clean energy.
Alpha Real Renewables is advised by TLT.
KKR considers acquiring a stake in Reliance’s Jio. (FS)
KKR is set to become the latest high-profile foreign investor to help bankroll billionaire Mukesh Ambani’s ambition to turn Jio Platforms into an Indian tech giant, FT reported.
KKR is in advanced talks to buy a $1.5bn stake at a valuation as high as $65bn for the fast-growing Indian digital company. Jio is part of Mr Ambani’s sprawling oil products-to-telecoms conglomerate Reliance Industries. Separately, Abu Dhabi’s sovereign wealth fund, Mubadala, is considering buying a stake of up to $1.2bn in Jio.
ByteDance value exceeds $100bn in private markets.
ByteDance's valuation has risen at least a third to more than $100bn in recent private share transactions, Bloomberg reported, reflecting expectations the owner of video phenom TikTok will keep pulling in advertisers.
Stock in the world's most valuable startup has changed hands recently at a price that suggests its value has risen more than 33% from about $75bn during a major round of funding two years ago.
Vickers Venture in talks to participate in Korea Growth Investment as LP for $500m fund. (FS)
Vickers Venture Partners, a Singapore-based deep tech-focused venture capital firm, is in talks to rope in Korea Growth Investment as an LP for its $500m sixth fund. Vickers submitted an investment proposal to Korea Growth Investment, a South Korean fund of funds manager specializing in private equity and venture capital investments.
The firm has invested in over 80 funds ranging across seed to mature to distressed assets, and oversees four fund-of-funds with $2.1bn worth of assets under management as of 2018,DealStreet Asia reported.
ADQ launches $300m fund for India, SE Asia startups. (FS)
ADQ, formerly known as Abu Dhabi Developmental Holding, launched a new venture capital fund with a corpus of $300m to invest in early-stage businesses in India and Southeast Asia. The fund, called Alpha Wave Incubation Fund, will be managed by New York-headquartered investment firm Falcon Edge Capital.
"To maximize our value creation and long-term impact on society, we will also take a leadership role by investing in new companies that are pioneering cutting-edge technologies and developing new and innovative businesses models," Mohammed Hassan Alsuwaidi, ADQ CEO.
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