Tech firm acquired
Kin and Carta taken private in £203m Apax deal
Kin and Carta, the digital transformation consultancy, has been acquired by Apax Partners, the latest tech listed company to be snapped up by private equity.
The £203 million deal follows a wave of so-called ‘post-pandemic plundering’ that has included the £143m purchase of Finsbury Food by Dbay Advisors, and a ‘semi-hostile’ bid for waste management firm Renewi, worth £636m, from Australian giant Macquarie.
The board of Kin and Carta, which in May this year bought the Edinburgh-based data provider Forecast Data Services, has recommended that its shareholders back the offer from Apax.
It values the 60-year-old company at 110p per share, which is a 41% premium to Tuesday’s closing price of 78p. Shares soared 39.7%, or 31p, to 109p on the back of the announcement.
The deal has raised concerns about the depletion of London’s tech stocks, described by Susannah Streeter, head of markets at Hargreaves Lansdown, as ‘another blow’ for the City.
Kin and Carta chairman John Kerr said the offer provides shareholders with the certainty of a cash price today “that fairly represents the opportunities and risks inherent in the business and delivery of Kin and Carta’s strategy”.
He added: “We believe the offer to acquire Kin and Carta by Apax Funds represents an excellent opportunity for the company to accelerate ambitious growth plans and scale the business, building on the acquisition and integration of leading data and technology companies, the development of valuable technology partnerships, and the creation of a strong portfolio of enterprise clients.
“Apax’s experience supporting and growing digital consultancy businesses with valuable connections, resources and access to incremental growth capital will enable Kin and Carta to expedite progress on the company’s existing strategy, by bolstering M&A capacity, providing access to new markets, and supporting the management team to deliver profitable long-term growth.”