Warburg Pincus-backed tech firm in talks on potential acquisitions: Reuters

(Reuters) — Mercator Solutions, a technology services company backed by private equity firm Warburg Pincus [WP.UL], is in talks with two or three companies about potential acquisitions, its new chief executive told Reuters in an interview.

The company, which focuses on the travel, transportation and logistics sectors, is targeting a combination of organic and inorganic opportunities for its future growth, said Cormac Whelan, who was announced as the company’s new chief executive on Wednesday.

“We are in discussion with two or three companies,” he said.

“We are looking for the right opportunity where it will add strategic value to our current products and our aim of becoming a disrupter in the global travel and transportation industry.”

The e-commerce space was one of many areas where the company, which serves clients including Aer Lingus, British Airways (ICAG.L), United Airlines and JetBlue Airways, was looking to make an investment, said Whelan, previously chief executive of Datalex, a digital retail provider to airlines.

He did not elaborate on the other areas.

Warburg Pincus acquired a majority stake in Dubai-based Mercator in 2014 from Emirates Group’s Dnata. It was the private equity firm’s first direct investment in the region.

Warburg Pincus and fellow U.S. private equity firm General Atlantic bought a 49 percent stake in United Arab Emirates-based payments processor Network International in November 2015.

Last November, Joseph Schull, chairman of Warburg Pincus International, said the company was targeting investments to help extend Mercator’s product and service offering across the travel, transport and logistics sectors.

In June 2015 Mercator acquired Catapult International, a technology services provider for freight forwarders, shippers and carriers.

Mercator also plans to hire a further 100 people over the next 12 months, spread geographically, said Whelan. It currently has 600 staff, with around 400 based in Dubai.