Bridgepoint to take majority stake in Qualitest


Bridgepoint has agreed to acquire a majority stake in Qualitest, a software testing and quality assurance company. No financial terms were disclosed. As a result of the transaction, Bridgepoint will replace Marlin Equity Partners as the majority owner of Qualitest.

PRESS RELEASE

LONDON, July 10, 2019 /PRNewswire/ — Qualitest, the world’s largest pure-play outsourced software testing and quality assurance specialist, announced today that Bridgepoint, an international private equity group, has agreed to take a majority stake in the business for an undisclosed sum, replacing current investor Marlin Equity Partners as majority owner.
Qualitest, founded in 1997 and with a service delivery platform that spans the US, the UK, Israel, Romania, and India, offers a wide range of AI-powered quality engineering and testing solutions, deploying engagement models tailored to the precise testing needs of key industries and technology platforms. The company serves some of the most innovative mid to large sized brands in the technology, financial services, retail, telecom, healthcare, insurance, aerospace, media and utilities industries.

Brands are increasingly turning to Qualitest to help them navigate a changing software landscape where delivering a superior customer experience has become increasingly dependent on technology and the threat of cyber-attacks and data breaches are ever present. With agile, DevOps, AI, and test automation changing how software is developed and deployed, companies are seeking Qualitest’s help to increase release cycle velocity and speed to market.

Qualitest’s expertise lies in mitigating the business risks associated with software releases. The additional investment will enable Qualitest to grow market share by accelerating its global acquisition strategy, strengthening its product development and investing further in talent.
Norm Merritt, CEO of Qualitest, said: “We’re excited to have found a strong growth partner in Bridgepoint. They are thoughtful investors who seek to work with strong management teams and have a history of investing in high growth potential markets. Their long-term capital commitment provides us with the platform to accelerate the next stage of our development and execute our global acquisition strategy so that we can continue delivering outstanding value to our customers.”

Xavier Robert, Partner and head of Bridgepoint’s investment activities in the UK, said: “We share management’s ambitions for the expansion of Qualitest’s platform through a combination of further organic growth and selective M&A. In a structurally growing market where technology disrupts every industry, new standards for quality and business assurance are required. Qualitest stands out for its track record of delivery and level of expertise.”

Jan Fillols, Managing Director of Marlin Equity Partners, said: “Qualitest is an exceptional business which, under our ownership, has become the world’s leading pure-play software testing and quality assurance company. With its market leading proposition in an industry experiencing multiple tailwinds we believe it is well positioned for continued success.”
Bridgepoint estimates that Qualitest operates in a market that is growing at 13% p.a. driven by the increasing needs of a $32bn global outsourced market where software performance has become more business critical. Bridgepoint’s track record in the testing market includes its current investment in Element, the global leader in materials and product qualification testing in the aerospace, oil & gas, fire and transportation markets, as well as a prior investment in LGC, an international life sciences measurement and testing group.

Advisers involved in this transaction included:
Bridgepoint: (Corporate Finance) Raymond James, (Legal) A&O, (Commercial) Bain, (Financial) Deloitte, (Tax) EY
Marlin: (Corporate Finance) Jefferies and GCA Altium, (Legal) Travers Smith, (Commercial) McKinsey, (Financial & Tax) Deloitte
Management: (Corporate Finance) Jamieson Corporate Finance, (Legal) Joelson (Financial & Tax) Blick Rothenberg

About Qualitest:
Qualitest is the world’s largest pure-play outsourced software testing and business assurance specialist with offices in the United States, the United Kingdom, Israel and India. Qualitest focuses on mid to large global enterprises in the technology, telecom, healthcare, finance, defence, media, utilities and retail industries. Powered by AI, Qualitest offers a wide range of testing solutions to meet customers’ business requirements, from engagement models to tailored testing by industry. Qualitest designs and delivers contextualized solutions utilizing unique testing-focused IP, products and methodologies that leverage deep industry-specific understanding with technology-specific competencies. For more information, please visit www.qualitestgroup.com.

About Bridgepoint:
Bridgepoint is an international private equity firm. With over $20 billion of assets under management and over $30 billion of capital raised to date, it typically focuses on acquiring well managed companies in attractive sectors helping companies and management teams by investing in expansion, operational transformation or via consolidating acquisitions. Bridgepoint has offices in Amsterdam, Frankfurt, Istanbul, London, Luxemburg, Madrid, New York, Paris, San Francisco, Shanghai, Stockholm and Warsaw. www.bridgepoint.eu

In March 2019 Bridgepoint acquired Kyriba, the global leader in cloud treasury and finance solutions and realised its investment in eFront, the world’s leading end-to-end alternative investment management software and solutions provider, in a $1.49 billion sale to BlackRock.

About Marlin Equity Partners:
Marlin Equity Partners is a global investment firm with over $6.7 billion of capital under management. The firm is focused on providing corporate parents, shareholders and other stakeholders with tailored solutions that meet their business and liquidity needs. Marlin invests in businesses across multiple industries where its capital base, industry relationships and extensive network of operational resources significantly strengthen a company’s outlook and enhance value. Since its inception, Marlin, through its group of funds and related companies, has successfully completed over 150 acquisitions. The firm is headquartered in Los Angeles, California with an additional office in London. For more information, please visit www.marlinequity.com.