AKKR to make over 10X on TrueCommerce sale

Accel-KKR’s investment in TrueCommerce’s predecessor dates to October 2012, when the firm acquired a majority interest in Accellos.

Accel-KKR is set to return more than 10 times its money on the sale of TrueCommerce to Welsh, Carson, Anderson & Stowe, people familiar with the matter told PE Hub.

The firm announced Thursday the completion of the sale of supply chain software provider TrueCommerce to WCAS.

The sale valued the business north of $700 million, the sources said. PE Hub reported that Accel-KKR was finalizing the sale of TrueCommerce in early November.

TrueCommerce, based in Pittsburgh, is a cloud-based business-to-business commerce and supply-chain network. The company integrates electronic data interchange (EDI), inventory management, fulfillment, and digital storefronts and marketplaces to clients’ business systems.

Accel-KKR’s investment in TrueCommerce’s predecessor dates to October 2012, when the firm acquired a majority interest in Accellos. At that time, Accellos was a $30 million revenue business with an enterprise value of $50 million, the sources said.

In July 2014, Accel-KKR-backed Accellos purchased HighJump Software, a significant add-on acquisition that brought together two complementary providers of supply chain execution software. The combination offered warehouse management, transportation management and logistics software, with next-generation technology in trading, partner integration and B2B commerce.

Accel-KKR reorganized the combined businesses into two independent operating companies under Accellos Holdings: HighJump Software, which provided supply chain execution software, and TrueCommerce, which operated a B2B commerce network. The structure enabled both operating companies to pursue strategies that best optimized their strengths and market opportunities, the firm said in a press release.

Under AKKR’s ownership, the Accellos-TrueCommerce-HighJump network grew revenues by 19x and completed 11 acquisitions, AKKR said.

In 2017, the firm sold HighJump to Körber AG for $750 million, translating into a 6x return on invested capital for the firm, PE Hub reported then.

Considering the sale of TrueCommerce also valued the company at more than $700 million, the combined price paid for TrueCommerce and HighJump is hovering around $1.5 billion, the sources said.

TrueCommerce has performed well through covid-19 and has been growing at a high-single-digits to low-double-digits rate, making it an attractive investment target for a private equity firm, PE Hub wrote in November.

Interest in the company was also accelerated by another sought-after business, GTCR-backed Commerce Hub, sources said at the time. The e-commerce software provider kicked off a process in mid-July via Morgan Stanley.

AKKR declined to comment for the story.