EIP spies innovation drive with RS Technologies investment; Cyber deals stack up

PE investing in cybersecurity heats up.

Good morning Hubsters, Craig McGlashan here filling in on the Wire for MK Flynn.

Energy and cybersecurity are the two big focuses of the newsletter today – as they have been for much of our coverage of late – so let’s dive right in.

Powering up. PE Hub’s Obey Martin Manayiti has been fueling the site with energy-related stories and he filled up the coverage a little more today.
The ability to drive innovation against increasing threats of severe weather and other factors that are pounding the energy grid will determine the success of investors in the utilities sector, Steven Kantowitz, partner at Energy Impact Partners (EIP) told Obey.

EIP, a New York-based private equity firm, on Monday teamed up with RS Technologies, a portfolio company of family office Werklund Growth Fund, for an equity investment of C$150 million ($109 million) to accelerate the expansion of RS Technologies.

Werklund Family Office is based in Calgary, Alberta. It manages the philanthropic, financial and business affairs of David Werklund and the Werklund family.

RS designs, engineers and manufactures composite utility poles and other products for the electric transmission and distribution sectors and the communications sector. Its products are distributed across North America, Europe and the Caribbean, among other regions.

“We were fortunate that they chose us because they believe that we bring a lot of non-financial benefits to this business,” Kantowitz said. “The ability to help drive innovation in this space is an important part of what we are doing here.”

Made from composite or fiber reinforced polymer materials, RS products aim to help add resilience to the grid against severe weather occurrences, such as hurricanes, fires, ice storms and other threats. These include woodpeckers, which devour wooden poles.

You can check out the full story here.

Also make sure you read Obey’s story on Centerbridge’s purchase of a majority stake in MacLean Power Systems from last week.

Cyber. Israeli security software company Cybereason has reportedly ditched its plans for an IPO and has instead hired JPMorgan to help it find a buyer.
The report in The Information cited a person familiar with the matter who said that the firm, valued at $2.5 billion by investors like Google, SoftBank and former US Treasury secretary Steve Mnuchin’s private equity firm Liberty Strategic Capital, canceled its plans to IPO due to the sluggish performance of the stock market this year.

Several private equity firms will likely be eyeing the company, which is in a sector that has been very popular with PE funds.

Just yesterday, PE Hub reported that SilverEdge Government Solutions, which is backed by Godspeed Capital, had acquired Reston, Virginia-based Counter Threat Solutions, a cybersecurity firm. No financial terms were disclosed.
CTS was founded in 2015 and is led by CEO Theresa Keith. The company will continue to operate with its current leadership under the SilverEdge platform.

Douglas T Lake, Jr, a founder and managing partner at Godspeed, said in a statement: “The addition of CTS to SilverEdge’s comprehensive suite of offerings further enhances the growth potential of the platform as it continues to scale into the leading technology and cybersecurity solutions provider for critical US intelligence agencies and select mission-oriented Department of Defense customers.”

Other recent cybersecurity deals include Thomas Bravo taking Ping Identity private for about $2.8 billion in mid-October.

Cross-Atlantic. I always like to include a plug for PE Hub Europe when I’m on Wire duty, so I’ll sneak in a mention of a deal that had an element of Europe and North America.

Symeres, a Keensight Capital portfolio company, announced the acquisition of Exemplify BioPharma, a provider of integrated end-to-end CMC drug development deliverables to pharmaceutical and biotech firms. Exemplify, based in Cranbury, New Jersey, offers consultancy services in process chemistry, analytical chemistry and formulation development. The company will remain under the management of co-founders Yadan Chen, CEO, and Paul O’Shea, chief scientific officer.

The acquisition extends the Nijmegen, Netherlands-based Symeres’ foothold in the US, where the company generates approximately 50 percent of its revenues. Symeres is a global drug discovery contract research organization and contract development and manufacturing organization.

Exemplify BioPharma is Symeres’ second acquisition in the US this year, following the acquisition of Organix.

European prescription. If you’d like to know more about what’s happening in European healthcare deals, and particularly pharmaceuticals, then check out PE Hub Europe’s roundup, courtesy of Nina Lindholm.

Deals include TPG buying Diocle Topco from ICG and Mérieux, as well as Astorg-backed OPEN Health acquiring the CM Group.

Read the full round-up here.

That’s it from me today. Chris Witkowsky will be on Wire duty tomorrow.