Ardian said March 18 it acquired a minority stake in Eloquant. Financial terms weren’t announced. The investment was part of an owner buyout (OBO) alongside its existing investors and management. Eloquant is a SaaS software publisher specializing in multichannel customer relations management.
ARDIAN SUPPORTS ELOQUANT IN ITS GROWTH
Paris, 18 March 2019 – Ardian, a world-leading private investment house, today announces the acquisition of a minority stake in Eloquant, a SaaS software publisher specialized in multichannel customer relations management, as part of an owner buyout (OBO) alongside its existing investors and management.
Founded in 2001 in Grenoble, France, Eloquant’s software is used to manage customer relations across all communication channels (telephone, email, chat and social network). The company offers an all-in-one solution built around three pillars:
- Dialog: software for processing and monitoring all incoming and outgoing contacts;
- Feedback: multichannel survey software designed to collect and measure customer feedback;
- Semantic: automated analysis software using customer comments to reveal strong and weak signals.
Recognised as a key player in its sector, Eloquant’s customer portfolio consists principally of mid-market businesses and large corporates operating in BtoB or BtoC activities.
The deal will enable the company to maintain its commercial momentum while pursuing an active growth strategy in France and internationally, according to Laurent Duc, CEO of Eloquant: “We wanted to speed up our development and strengthen our position, so we embarked on a new growth cycle based on our capacity for innovation and bolt-on acquisitions. With that goal in mind, Ardian Growth is the ideal partner because of its market expertise and substantial ability to provide support.”
Romain Chiudini, Director at Ardian Growth, added: “Eloquant has proven the relevance of its offer on the French market and the team has the ambition to establish itself internationally. It is the right moment for Ardian Growth to provide its support to help accelerate, particularly on external growth in Europe.”
Ardian is a world-leading private investment house with assets of US$90bn managed or advised in Europe, the Americas and Asia. The company is majority-owned by its employees. It keeps entrepreneurship at its heart and focuses on delivering excellent investment performance to its global investor base.
Through its commitment to shared outcomes for all stakeholders, Ardian’s activities fuel individual, corporate and economic growth around the world.
Holding close its core values of excellence, loyalty and entrepreneurship, Ardian maintains a truly global network, with more than 560 employees working from fifteen offices across Europe (Frankfurt, Jersey, London, Luxembourg, Madrid, Milan, Paris and Zurich), the Americas (New York, San Francisco and Santiago) and Asia (Beijing, Singapore, Tokyo and Seoul). It manages funds on behalf of around 800 clients through five pillars of investment expertise: Fund of Funds, Direct Funds, Infrastructure, Real Estate and Private Debt.
Eloquant was founded in 2001 in Grenoble following a Hewlett-Packard global telecommunications centre spin-off. In 2004, Eloquant gained its independence and began developing its own SaaS applications.
Initially positioned on Dialog solutions for the unified management of incoming and outgoing customer interactions on communication channels (voice, email, chat, SMS, mobile apps, callback, social networks), Eloquant was acquired by Laurent Duc (CEO) and a financial partner in 2013. The company then marked a major strategic and commercial turning point, especially through several acquisitions that allowed it to broaden its customer solutions. In 2014, Eloquant acquired Interview, a company specialising in multichannel survey creation and management, which consolidated the Feedback solution. In 2015, Eloquant acquired Holmes Semantic Solutions (Ho2S), a company specialising in semantic and linguistic solutions. Finally, in 2018, Eloquant acquired LiveBotter, a company specialising in virtual assistants (chatbot), to reinforce the Dialog solution through a new channel; these automated conversational agents mark the beginning of Artificial Intelligence in Customer Relationship Management. The company also began its international expansion in 2018 by opening an office in Frankfurt
LIST OF PARTICIPANTS
– Eloquant: Laurent Duc, Raphaël Shalgian
– Ardian: Romain Chiudini, Louise Gros
– Ardian Financial Auditor: Grant Thornton (Nicolas Tixier, Antoine Van der Borght)
– Ardian Legal Advisor: McDermott Will & Emery (Corporate: Diana Hund, Marie-Muriel Barthelet, Claire Barra – Tax: Antoine Vergnat, Côme de Saint Vincent – Bancaire: Pierre-Arnoux Mayoly, Stanislas Chenu)
– Eloquant Financial Advisor: Oaklins (Véronique Roth, Thibaut de Monclin, Amance Pelissier)
– Management Legal Advisor: Jeausserand Audouard (Erwan Bordet, Faustine Paoluzzo, Antoine Leroux)
– Arranger: BNP Paribas (Frédérique Bousseau, Catherine Regnier)
– Arranger Advisor: VOLT Associés (Frédérique Bousseau, Guillaume Escat, Catherine Regnier)