B2B information. Dublin-based ION Investment Group is to acquire a controlling stake in Acuris (publishers of MergerMarket and Debtwire) from BC Partners and GIC. BC and the Acuris management will retain minority stakes, with the former thought to have 24% of the equity. The deal values the company at £1.35m, some four times the price BC paid Pearson for the business six years ago – and 13 x what Pearson had paid seven years before that. ION is backed by private equity group Carlyle and has become a major financial software company across Europe.
Acuris was founded as MergerMarket in 1999 and bought by then Financial Times publisher Pearson for £101m in 2006. It was subsequently acquired by BC Partners for £382m in 2015, with GIC acquiring a 30% stake two years later. Acuris claims 115,000 daily users across 5,000 corporate subscribers, and employs 1,500 staff in 66 locations around the world. It faces increasing competition from Pitchbook (owned by Morningstar) and Bloomberg.