With the acquisition – from Amadeus Capital Partners, DFJ Esprit and Kennet – Lyceum will take a significant majority stake in the company.
In conjunction with the investment, Lyceum Partners Jeremy Hand and David Harland will join the company’s board. Martin Leuw, a highly-experienced software entrepreneur and is the former CEO of IRIS Software, also joined the board, as Chairman, to guide the business though its next phase of organic and acquisitive growth. The deal will enable Clearswift to broaden its security software range and acquire further technical capability, increase its presence in key vertical sectors, and build scale and geographical reach.
Led by Chief Executive Officer Richard Turner, Clearswift provides companies with security software products to manage inbound threats, data loss prevention, web access policies and compliance across both web and email communications.
The company, which also has operations in Germany, Spain, Japan, the US, Australia and Holland, employs around 170 people with almost two thirds based in the UK. It serves an international range of approximately 17,000 customers in around 50 countries and has a strong presence in the defence, law and order and government sectors. Customers include BAE Systems, Hitachi Solutions, An Post, Warwick District Council, T-Mobile and Australia Post.
Sales are mainly made through a worldwide network of channel partners.
Commenting on the deal, new Chairman Martin Leuw said: “Clearswift is a subscription revenue business, operating in a high-growth global market, delivering mission-critical regulatory and compliance products. Clearswift’s content-aware, policy-based solutions are a key point of differentiation which enables over 17,000 organisations to manage and maintain no-compromise data, e-mail and web security across all gateways and in all directions. This is coupled with specialist IP valued by a number of sectors including government and defence sectors, but becoming increasingly vital to all organisations. With the backing of Lyceum Capital, who have an impressive track record of growing businesses, we will be well equipped to execute an accelerated growth strategy.”
This transaction follows Lyceum’s recent investments in the technology sector including its £30 million acquisition of leading managed IT services provider Adapt in September, and £50 million investment in Access, a SaaS (software as a service) based accounting and ERP (enterprise resource planning) software and services business, which completed in March.
About Lyceum Capital:
Lyceum Capital is an independent investment firm that invests in innovative and growing mid-sized UK-headquartered businesses; having acquired over 80 businesses in the UK and internationally over the last ten years. Lyceum plans to invest a further £300 million in the UK over the next two to three years.
Lyceum Capital makes highly targeted investments in mid-sized businesses with the potential to become larger participants in fragmented and growing sectors; and has a strong track record across a number of industries.
Lyceum Capital works alongside management teams to increase scale by driving growth through investing in infrastructure and improved operations as well as sourcing and funding complementary acquisitions in the UK and internationally. Through a combination of investment, operational and strategic input Lyceum Capital helps management build robust and successful businesses with good long-term growth prospects.
Clearswift’s content-aware, policy based solutions enable over 17,000 organisations to manage and maintain no-compromise data, e-mail and web security across all gateways and in all directions.