Leading software investor Thoma Bravo acquires Mercell

Terje_Wibe_CEO

Thoma Bravo, a leading private equity firm, announces the completion of its acquisition of Mercell, a Viking Venture portfolio company. Mercell is the European market’s leading provider of e-tendering and procurement systems for public sector suppliers. 

The voluntary cash offer was completed on the 8th of August, and the compulsory acquisition was completed 16th of August. The shares of Mercell have been suspended from trading on Oslo Børs, and will be delisted from Oslo Børs as soon as practically possible.

Global growth goals 

Terje-Wibe-CEO-Mercell

– I am thrilled to partner with Thoma Bravo and leverage their deep operational and investment expertise to achieve our global growth goals. I am proud of the entire Mercell team for helping us reach this milestone, and I look forward to further success as we build upon our market leadership position and continue to deliver customers best-in-class e-tendering and procurement systems, says Terje Wibe, CEO of Mercell Holding ASA.

Partnership-driven approach

In a press release from Thoma Bravo, George Jaber, a Senior Vice President at Thoma Bravo, says that: – Mercell’s SaaS network of buyers and suppliers for public tendering is extremely valuable. As a private company alongside Thoma Bravo, Mercell is well positioned to enhance its product offering and global growth. Our team is excited to partner with Mercell to help the company achieve its full potential and set Mercell up for sustained long-term growth.

In the same release, A.J. Rohde, a Senior Partner at Thoma Bravo adds: – The European SaaS market is experiencing extraordinary growth, and our partnership with Mercell allows us to expand our presence in this important global market. Thoma Bravo’s partnership-driven approach will benefit Mercell greatly through investments in product development and strategic acquisitions.

Great success for Viking Venture

Joar-Welde-Partner-Viking Venture

– Since we invested in Mercell in 2018, it has grown its Annual Recurring Revenue (ARR) from 90 mnok to 817 mnok and has become the market leader in Europe. We listed the company on Oslo Stock Exchange in 2020, and Mercell has grown its ARR 2.5 times during this period. This has happened in a great collaboration with the owners and management team, says Joar Welde, Partner at Viking Venture and Chairman of the Board at Mercell.

­– The fact that Thoma Bravo acquires Mercell shows that we have been able to create a high-quality company with a great future outlook, he adds.

Viking Venture invested in Mercell in June 2018. Together with the management team, we have transformed Mercell from a Norwegian-focused company to become the European leader within e-tendering. The company has achieved a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 75%, having increased ARR from NOK 90 million to NOK 817 million.

During our ownership time, Mercell has: 

– Grown its ARR 9 times

– Acquired 12 companies in 5 different countries

– Acquired and delisted EU Supply off the London Stock Exchange

– Acquired Visma Commerce business area from Visma

– Raised 2.7 billion NOK in new funding

– Raised 1.9 billion NOK in debt and bonds (where 298 MNOK where converted into the new bond raised in December 2020)

– Concluded a successful Public To Private (P2P) process with a sale to Thoma Bravo at a 110% premium to the share price

Header image: Terje Wibe, CEO of Mercell