Electric Business

A brief summary of business news to keep you informed on company start-ups, corporate downsizing and mergers and acquisitions.

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Arcadis acquires analytics software specialist SEAMS

Global consultancy Arcadis has acquired software and analytics specialist SEAMS as it bids to improve its ‘infrastructure performance and resilience’ in the UK. SEAMS provides enterprise decision analytics (EDA) software for use in the water, energy and transport sectors. The acquisition allows Arcadis to accelerate the full digitisation of its business, responding to digitally disruptive trends in the utilities and infrastructure sectors.

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BidX1 buys in-house auctioneers Andrew & Robertson

BidX1, an Irish-owned online property auction house, has bought UK in-room auctioneers Andrew & Robertson in a move that secures its entry to the British market and makes it the second largest auctioneer in the UK. In six years BidX1 has sold over 6,000 assets in Ireland raising over £1.2bn. Its digital platform boasts a greater volume of bids per lot than traditional means and opens the auction process to interest across the world. The platform has proved popular with private equity houses seeking full transparency of their sales; BidX1 sold around 650 assets for private equity funds in 2016.

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Houlihan Lokey acquires Quayle Munro

Independent advisory firm Quayle Munro is being bought by Houlihan Lokey, a global independent investment bank with expertise in mergers and acquisitions, capital markets, financial restructuring, valuation, and strategic consulting. Quayle Munro is a London-based data and software advisory firm of 40 professionals, with expertise in financial services, fintech and education.

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Royal Armouries’ commercial arm bought by government

The Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) has agreed to acquire Royal Armouries (International) plc, the commercial arm of the museum. The Royal Armoury was established in the 15th century and is the oldest museum in the UK. The RAI assets the government has bought include the cafe and catering arm, events business and car park. The £11.2m acquisition will enable the museum to take ownership of the commercial offer at its site in Leeds, aligning its services with the successful model used at other major DCMS-sponsored national museums.

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Franklin Templeton acquires Edinburgh Partners

Franklin Templeton has agreed to acquire Edinburgh Partners, an established global value investment manager. The deal sees the firm welcome back Dr Sandy Nairn, who worked alongside Sir John Templeton and was employed by Franklin Templeton for more than a decade. He will become chairman of Templeton Global Equity Group and remain investment partner and CEO of Edinburgh Partners. Edinburgh Partners’ team of 12 manages approximately $10bn in global and emerging markets equities. This is the latest example of Franklin Templeton’s strategy of investing in relatively small but experienced asset management teams.

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Nomad Foods seals £200m deal for GoodFella’s Pizza

Nomad Foods, the owner of Birds Eye, has agreed to buy Green Isle Foods for €225m. Green Isle Foods is a subsidiary of 2 Sisters Food Group and the owner of GoodFella’s Pizza. Founded in 1993, GoodFella’s is Green Isle’s top-selling brand, holding the number one and number two market share positions within the frozen pizza category in Ireland and the UK, respectively. The acquisition also includes the San Marco brand and two frozen pizza manufacturing facilities, providing Nomad with a platform for future expansion in the category.

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TigerWit buys retail broker Mercor Index

TigerWit has announced that it has acquired Mercor Index, a UK based and FCA regulated broker founded by industry veteran Simon Denham. Mercor Index is the provider of the TimeToTrade platform in the UK, which allows retail investors to invest directly in physical stocks and shares, as well as trade in global financial markets such as indices, FX and commodities via CFDs. The platform offers the facility to test and automate trading strategies before implementing them in live markets. Its acquisition secures TigerWit its entry into the UK market.

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Proactis files tender offer for Hubwoo

Proactis has filed a tender offer for the share capital of Hubwoo, the 79%-owned French arm of e-commerce firm Perfect Commerce which Proactis acquired last year. Based in Wetherby, Proactis is a speed control and eprocurement software provider that aims to help organisations streamline and automate their processes. The €5.6m deal would give Proactis access to Hubwoo’s own cloud-based spend management and business process automation solutions.

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Geometric Results to acquire de Poel Group

Extended workforce solutions provider Geometric Results has announced the takeover of the de Poel group of companies. De Poel Group is based in the UK and provides vendor-neutral MSP programs supported by its own technology platform to more than 120 private and public sector clients. The acquisition broadens GRI’s coverage of sectors and expands its presence in Europe.

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Informa offers £3.8bn to acquire UBM

Events and business information giants UBM and Informa have announced the terms of a merger deal. Informa has made a share and cash offer of 1.083 shares and 163p in cash for each UBM share, valuing the business at £3.8bn excluding debt. Once a media conglomerate that owned the Daily Express, UBM is now the largest pure-play b2b events organiser in the world, employing over 3,750 people. Informa’s businesses include b2b events, business intelligence and academic publishing. It employs more than 7,500 people worldwide and is valued at around £6bn.

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