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Vista Equity sale of Advicent heads to first round: sources

First-round bids for Advicent Solutions, a portfolio company of Vista Equity Partners, are due next week, three sources said.

Vista put Advicent up for sale last month, sources said. Advicent, Milwaukee, provides wealth-management software for registered investment advisers. Raymond James is advising, the people said.

Advicent produces EBITDA in the high teens; the company is expected to sell for 10x to 12x, one source, a banker, said. Strategics that may be interested include SS&C Technologies, Broadridge, Envestnet and DST Systems, two of the sources said.

Middle-market private equity firms that are focused on technology and can do a $150 million to $300 million deal are expected to be interested, sources said. “It’s a very long list of possible players,” a second banker said.

Vista’s investment in Advicent dates to 2008 when the tech-focused buyout shop invested in Zywave.

In 2013, Aurora Capital Group acquired Zywave’s insurance-solutions division. The financial-planning unit changed its name to Advicent and stayed with Vista. The insurance solutions unit retained the Zywave name under Aurora, press reports said.

One key part of the Advicent auction is whether the company’s technology is up to date, the second banker said. “That’s the key determinant whether a bigger brand name will have interest [in Advicent] or not,” the second banker said.

There has been a lot of investment in Advicent’s technology over the past several years, the first banker said.

Vista on Tuesday inked a deal to buy Market Track, a provider of market intelligence solutions for retailers, brands, manufacturers, agencies and brokers. Aurora is the seller.

Vista, Advicent and Raymond James could not be reached for comment.

News of the Advicent auction was previously reported by Mergermarket.

Action Item: Contact Advicent CEO Angela Pecoraro at +1 855-885-7526

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