Austin Ventures puts Asset International on the block

Asset International, which is backed by Austin Ventures, is up for sale, four sources said.

Evercore Partners Inc is advising on the process, three of the sources said. New York-based Asset International provides data and technology to financial services firms such as mutual funds, hedge funds and 401k plans. The company is seeking bids of more than $100 million, one banker said.

Austin Ventures backed Asset International nearly five years ago and committed to invest up to $100 million, Chairman and CEO Jim Casella told peHUB in 2011. AI is a rollup of smaller companies, including Strategic Insight, Plan For Life, The Trade and Asset International. Last year, Asset International acquired Investor Economics.

Asset International generates revenue of $60 million and EBITDA of $15 million, a second banker said. Half of the company’s business is pure data while the rest is a mix of less sexy online content that includes weekly and monthly publications, the second banker said.

AI’s data business could fetch 13x to 14x EBITDA while the content side could be valued at 6x, the second source said.

Lower middle market PE firms could be interested in Asset International. Strategics such as Thomson Reuters (the publisher of peHUB), Reed Elsevier, Euromoney and Wolters Kluwer could also be involved, sources said. (Casella is the former head of Reed Business U.S.)

Executives at Asset International, Austin Ventures and Evercore did not return calls for comment.

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