U.S. private equity firm W Capital Partners and Canadian growth equity firm Georgian Partners have purchased shares from early investors in Vision Critical, a customer intelligence software platform. No financial terms were released for the secondary deal; however, the Globe and Mail reported $76 million of stock was acquired. The holdings of Dr. Angus Reid, whose 2002 investment facilitated the company’s early growth, formed part of the deal. As a result, W Capital Managing Directors Alison Killilea and Blake Heston will join the board, replacing Reid. Georgian led Vancouver-based Vision Critical’s last financing (2014), which raised $16 million.
W Capital Partners and Georgian Partners Buy out Early Shareholders to Take Stake In Vision Critical
Specialists in growth-stage companies, the two firms bring expertise and network value to the company
February 28, 2017
VANCOUVER, British Columbia–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Vision Critical, a leading customer intelligence platform provider, today announced the completion of a private resale of a significant portion of the company’s shares. W Capital Partners, a New York-based private equity firm specializing in shareholder liquidity solutions for growth companies, along with existing shareholder Georgian Partners, a Toronto-based firm specializing in growth stage enterprise software companies, have purchased shares from early shareholders including the remaining holdings of pollster Dr. Angus Reid, whose investment in 2002 facilitated the early expansion of the company founded by his son, Andrew Reid. Andrew Reid will remain a significant shareholder.
“The leadership position that continues to fuel the growth of Vision Critical is firmly grounded in the vision and entrepreneurial management of Andrew Reid and Angus Reid,” said Scott Miller, CEO of Vision Critical. “With the new long-term investor support that we have now put in place, the company is superbly positioned for its next phase of growth as a critical source of customer intelligence for the world’s leading brands.”
“With this transaction I look forward to investing more time and resources in my not for profit research institute and other philanthropic activities,” said Dr. Reid. “Vision Critical is fortunate to have two highly respected financial partners who will help guide it through its next chapter.”
Georgian Partners is an existing shareholder in Vision Critical, having first invested in the company in 2014. The firm’s decision to increase its stake in the company is a reflection of the company’s continued performance and the growing market opportunity that customer intelligence represents as organizations orient themselves around building authentic customer relationships.
“We are very pleased to support the continued growth of the company,” said Simon Chong, Managing Partner at Georgian Partners. “Vision Critical’s success to date is testimony to the strength and visionary leadership of the firm’s founders, early investors and management.”
W Capital Partners is a new investor in Vision Critical. The firm specializes in growth equity stage private companies and brings considerable value to its role in portfolio companies, including enterprise software expertise and a broad network of relationships to support each portfolio company’s strategic goals. Alison Killilea and Blake Heston, Managing Directors of W Capital Partners, will join the Vision Critical board of directors, replacing Angus Reid.
“We see tremendous potential in the customer intelligence market as technology pulls the customer into the center of business decision making,” said Alison Killilea. “Vision Critical’s market leading position, combined with the launch of its next generation, fully extensible platform, Sparq 3, makes this a fantastic time for W Capital to take a lead investment role in its next stage of growth.”
“We welcome W Capital to our company and board as well as the new commitment from Georgian Partners, which has already contributed so much to our strategy and development,” said Philip C. Deck, Chairman of the Board of Vision Critical. “We have successfully found a way to provide the liquidity that long-term investors have sought while strengthening our investor base for growth in the years ahead.”
Oversight of the secondary sale process was provided by a Special Committee of the Board of Vision Critical with financial advice from BMO Capital Markets and legal advice from Osler, Hoskin & Harcourt LLP. Financial terms were not disclosed.
About Vision Critical
Vision Critical provides a cloud-based customer intelligence platform that allows companies to build engaged, secure communities of customers they can use continuously, across the enterprise, for ongoing, real-time feedback and insight. Designed for today’s always-on, social and mobile savvy customer, Vision Critical’s technology helps large, customer-centric enterprises discover what their customers want so they can deliver what they need. Unlike traditional customer research, which is slow, expensive and gathers dust on a shelf, Vision Critical’s customer intelligence platform replaces static data and cumbersome reports with real-time actionable customer intelligence that companies need to build better products, deliver better services and achieve better business outcomes.
Hundreds of high-performance organizations use Vision Critical’s technology. Follow us on Twitter at https://twitter.com/visioncritical.
Photo courtesy of Vision Critical