Suma Capital has acquired a minority stake in Barcelona and New York City-based Nice People at Work, a developer of big data and business intelligence solutions for video content providers. No financial terms were disclosed.
June 2, 2020 – Suma Capital announces the acquisition of a significant double-digit minority stake in Nice People at Work. Founded in 2008, NPAW is a developer of groundbreaking, scalable Big Data and Business Intelligence solutions for video content providers. Following the transaction, founders Ferran Gutiérrez (CEO) and Sergi Vergés (COO), remain majority shareholders, while SC Growth Fund II takes two of NPAW’s five board seats.
Suma sourced this deal and all others for its SC Growth funds on a proprietary basis. Negotiations for the NPAW investment were completed – and due diligence entirely carried out – remotely, during the global Covid-19 lockdown.
NPAW uses a subscription-based SaaS (Software as a Service) platform, offering clients real-time understanding of content usage, service quality and audience behaviour. Powered by Artificial Intelligence, it optimizes content discovery; permits the proactive management of user experience; accelerates subscription growth; reduces client churn; increases advertising effectiveness; and solves technical and operational glitches efficiently. No other video analytics company offers as broad a range of services to content providers. NPAW reinforced its SaaS platform (called YOUBORA) with a new 6.0 version, which was successfully launched in April in the midst of the global Covid-19 lockdown.
The online video services sector in which NPAW operates is growing exponentially due to the transition to digital television, the multiplying of video content providers, the explosion in social media usage, and the ubiquity of video on mobile devices. Social distancing and the burgeoning Work From Home trend is further accelerating home video consumption and business video traffic.
“Suma’s financial muscle and shared belief in our ambitious goals are essential ingredients for taking NPAW to the next level in a highly competitive marketplace,” says Ferran Gutiérrez, NPAW founder and chief executive. “With Suma onboard we’ll make our A to Z service offering for clients even more compelling.” NPAW’s next stage of growth is focused on expanded services for its current clients, the launch of new modules for its YOUBORA platform, and a major push to serve telecommunications companies throughout the world. The firm aims to more than double its revenues by 2023.
“This deal will accelerate NPAW’s impressive global growth, which will be pursued organically and through acquisitions,” says Pau Bermúdez-Cañete, the lead partner on the NPAW acquisition at Suma Capital. “Further growth in the US and Asia will be an initial priority.”
With forecast revenues of €15 million in 2020 (representing a three-fold increase in three years), NPAW currently has over one hundred large clients in Europe, the Americas, and Asia. Clients include pure online content providers such as Rakuten, Pluto, and Hulu; broadcast and satellite service providers such as TF1, Fox and BeIN Sports; and telecommunications operators, such as Orange, Telefónica and Vodafone. NPAW has been a profitable cash generator for years, with an EBITDA margin in excess of 20 percent.
The NPAW transaction follows SC Growth Fund II’s first deal, a majority investment in December in Implika Education, a pioneer in professional and vocational training through online and physical training centers. SC Growth Fund II, targeting €125 million, held a first close on €65 million in December and expects a second close this summer, with a final close a few months later. The placement agent for the fund is Triago. SC Growth Fund I, raised €50 million in 2015 and is fully invested in seven companies, performing at over 2.4x cost.
About Suma Capital
Suma Capital invests in small, rapidly growing businesses and joins forces with their management teams to accelerate expansion. With a focus on low-to-mid market companies in Spain, Suma has an exceptionally large 17-member team that offers more resources to portfolio companies than is typical for this sector. Suma’s sweet spot for investment are companies with annual sales of between €10 million and €50 million. The firm invests through two dedicated investment programs: Growth Capital and Sustainable Infrastructure (the latter through SC Efficiency Funds I and II), with some €300 million under management. Suma Capital is a responsible investor and strongly believes that implementing best practice on ESG issues positively impacts value creation for all stakeholders.
Suma was one of the first private equity firms to be a signatory member of the United Nations’ Responsible Investment Principles (since 2013, with a current UN rating of A+) and the firm was awarded the Spanish Private Equity Association’s Environmental, Social and Governance prize in 2019. For more information on Suma’s team, investment principles, and engagements, please visit: www.sumacapital.com