”A major international owner like this means new opportunities for Basefarm. ABRY has expertise in the IT, managed services, and datacentre space and has investments in a range of similar portfolio companies, including an international network that Basefarm can now draw upon. This provides us with the opportunity to broaden our international presence while continuing to expand at home,” says CEO Grethe Viksaas at Basefarm Group.
Basefarm delivers business critical IT services through its high quality datacentre facilities located in Oslo, Stockholm and Amsterdam. The Company is enjoying healthy growth and has increased turnover consistently by over 20% per year and will have a turnover of approximately NOK 400 million (USD 70m) in 2012. Basefarm enjoys many Norwegian customers, but is also expanding internationally with operations in Sweden and the Netherlands.
”The sale to ABRY fits well with our original plans when starting out in 2000 of becoming a leading international player over time. We feel what we can offer is something both Norwegian and international customers need,” says Viksaas.
A solid investment for Reiten & Co
“Basefarm has been a strong investment for RCP VII which also highlights Reiten & Co’s position within the IT sector. RCP VII has executed on its original plans, including expanding into the Netherlands and breaking through into the banking and finance sector. Many parties have approached us to express their interest in acquiring Basefarm. RCP VII chose to accept an offer from ABRY as a very appropriate partner for management to help support the Company’s future growth and international expansion,” says partner Christian Melby at Reiten & Co.
A well-run company with great potential
Basefarm is ABRY’s first investment in Norway, but since inception in 1989 ABRY has invested in more than 450 companies globally, and currently is managing more than USD 3.5 billion of capital.
”Given ABRY’s experience in the datacentre and managed services sector, we have been impressed by what the management team at Basefarm has built and the high quality customer base they support. The Company has also developed a compelling geographical expansion strategy with operations in Sweden and the Netherlands. We feel Basefarm has tremendous potential and we believe our expertise and data centre portfolio will help promote growth within the Basefarm business,” said partner Brian St. Jean at ABRY Partners.
Norwegian management and headquarters
”Although our new owner is American, Basefarm will still be a company under Norwegian management with headquarters in Norway. Our customers and staff will notice little of the ownership change, but as a company the change will offer us even better opportunities to get involved in important sectors like banking and finance, retail, health and oil and gas,” says Viksaas.
ABRY will maintain voting control of the Board and will be joined by a few independent directors with particular expertise in the managed services sector.
Arma Partners acted as the exclusive financial advisor to Basefarm.
Basefarm specialises in business critical services and is one of Northern Europe’s leading actors in hosting large-scale Internet solutions. With our 270 employees in Oslo, Stockholm and Amsterdam, we deliver managed hosting and datacentre services to businesses and organisations that have high demands on their services/IT infrastructure/applications availability, security, development and quality. We can take overall responsibility for our customers’ services and ensure that the interaction between different systems, infrastructure and traffic flow always works. We work closely with our customers and offer flexibility combined with high availability and security.
About ABRY Partners
ABRY Partners is a private equity investment firm focused on media, communications, datacentre, and business and information services investments. They invest in high quality companies and partner with management to help build their businesses. Since its founding in 1989, ABRY has completed over $36 billion of leveraged transactions and other private equity investments involving approximately 450 properties. ABRY maximises the value of its investments by concentrating on certain industry sectors where they have substantial operating and investment experience. Because ABRY brings deep industry insight to the investment process, they are able to quickly understand key issues, accurately assess opportunity, value and risk, and bring relevant information to bear. They partner with skilled executives and invest significant capital to help build stronger companies that become industry leaders.
About Reiten & Co
Reiten & Co is a leading private equity company in the Nordic region managing which advises funds with 3.5 billion Norwegian kroner ($620m) under management. The company has experience investing in several different sectors and funds advised by Reiten & Co primarily invest in medium sized Norwegian and Nordic companies. Since 1996 Reiten & Co funds have invested in 24 companies, including IT, oil/offshore services, food and nutrition, telecom, real estate, retail and outsourcing. Basefarm is number 10 out of 24 portfolio companies which have been sold, mainly through exchange listings and sales to industry players. In 2011, Reiten & Co fund portfolio companies had combined revenue of 8.6 billion Norwegian kroner ($1.5bn) and approximately 4,900 employees.
Published: March 12, 2012