HGGC buys Selligent

HGGC said Friday that it has acquired Selligent via an equity recapitalization of the company. The company’s founders and management will retain a significant minority stake. Financial terms weren’t announced. Selligent, of Belgium, is a B2C marketing automation software provider. The Jordan, Edmiston Group advised Selligent.


PALO ALTO, Calif.—July 10, 2015—HGGC, a leading middle market private equity firm, today announced that it has completed the equity recapitalization of Selligent SA (“Selligent” or “the Company”), a major, Belgium-based B2C marketing automation software provider. HGGC’s investment will help the rapidly growing company expand into new markets and broaden its technology platform. As part of the agreement, the Company’s founders and management will retain a significant minority stake in the business, which will remain headquartered in Europe. Terms of the private transaction were not disclosed.

Selligent provides full, end-to-end customer lifecycle management in a single solution for more than 450 companies in retail, financial services, publishing and travel and other sectors in 19 countries, primarily in Europe. Customers include such leading brands as Samsung, GM, IKEA, BMW, ING and Hearst. The Company has more than 210 employees with offices in Belgium (Braine l’Alleud and Hasselt), Paris, and Munich, and has recently added locations in New York and Boston in preparation for entry into the U.S. marketplace. In addition, the Company has two franchise partners located in Italy and Spain.

“We are very excited about this partnership with HGGC and are confident the resources they can provide will enable us to create a global footprint,” said Andre Lejeune, CEO and co-founder of Selligent. “HGGC gives Selligent the operational expertise and network of relationships we will need in order to continue our progress as a leader in marketing automation.”

Built on a native SaaS platform, Selligent combines a single view of the consumer, sophisticated campaign management and omni-channel campaign execution to create unique consumer experiences across multiple channels. The Company has experienced sustained, strong, recurring revenue growth–45 percent in 2014—and an impressive 94 percent customer renewal rate.

“HGGC is a great fit for Selligent as we have time and again demonstrated our ability to help companies successfully expand into new global markets,” said Rich Lawson, CEO and Managing Partner at HGGC, who will become Chairman of Selligent. “We are looking forward to working with Selligent co-founders Andre Lejeune, Thierry Techy and Jan Teerlinck, who have all demonstrated an innovative vision for the future of audience engagement software.”

Given the Company’s success helping European marketers succeed in a multi-lingual, multi-cultural environment while conforming to stringent EU data privacy regulations, Selligent’s co-founders and HGGC see strong potential for active international growth, particularly in the United States. Selligent will maintain its existing locations while expanding into new territories.

“Increased complexity of businesses and diversity of consumer data sources, along with the push for meaningful customer interactions, is driving the rapid adoption of sophisticated marketing automation solutions,” said Hudson Smith, Principal at HGGC. “Selligent’s platform was built to accommodate these demanding challenges, and produce strong marketing results. Their nimble solutions allow ambitious marketers to seamlessly manage individual consumer journeys in real time, without significant support from an organization’s IT department.”

This transaction is HGGC’s fourth of 2015 and follows the firm’s successful record of taking businesses global through both organic growth and strategic acquisitions. Past examples include MyWebGrocer, to which the firm added Dublin-based Buy4Now; library software leader Innovative, which acquired VLTS in order to add customers in Europe and Asia; SSI, which added MyOpinions Ltd. to access the Australia and New Zealand markets; Montreal-based iCongo, which HGGC merged with Munich-based hybris software, and ultimately sold to SAP; and Sunquest, which added Powerpath from Sweden’s Elekta AB, and was sold for $1.4 billion.

Selligent was represented by The Jordan, Edmiston Group, a New York City based investment bank that specializes in media, information, marketing and technology sectors; and Clarity, a leading mid-market investment bank in the United Kingdom focused on the media and technology industries. Selligent ‘s legal advisor on the transaction was Allen & Overy; and HGGC was advised by Kirkland & Ellis and King & Wood Mallesons.

About HGGC
HGGC is a leading middle-market private equity firm with over $2.4 billion in cumulative capital commitments. Based in Palo Alto, Calif., HGGC is distinguished by its “Advantaged Investing” model that enables the firm to source and acquire scalable businesses at attractive multiples through partnerships with management teams, founders and sponsors who reinvest in deals alongside HGGC, creating a strong alignment of interests. Over its history, HGGC has completed platform investments, add-on acquisitions, recapitalizations and liquidity events with an aggregate transaction value of more than $10 billion, representing more than 45 transactions. More information is available at www.hggc.com

About Selligent
Selligent is a fast-growing international marketing automation provider that powers the customer engagement programs of more than 450 European brands in retail, financial services, publishing and travel. Selligent’s solution orchestrates customer communications across multiple channels, including email, site optimization, social, mobile and customer care. The platform delivers omnichannel audience engagement, reaching beyond customers to drive personalization for anonymous site visitors and to layer behavioral data on top of traditional CRM databases. www.selligent.com