YFM Equity reaps 3x return on sale of GroupBC

The sale generated a 3x multiple return for investors.

YFM Equity Partners sold its holding in GroupBC to Bentley Systems Inc, which provides software and digital services for design, construction and operations of infrastructure. Financial details were not disclosed. The sale generated a 3x multiple return for investors.

Press Release

YFM Equity Partners-advised funds have sold their shareholding in GroupBC to Bentley Systems Incorporated, a leading global provider of comprehensive software and digital twins services for advancing the design, construction, and operations of infrastructure, for an undisclosed sum.

GroupBC is a leading provider of enterprise-scale information management systems for construction-related projects and asset owners. Its UK-hosted Common Date Environment makes it easy for teams to collaborate, manage and share documents and data from a central, secure cloud-based platform.

YFM has been supporting the transformational growth of UK SMEs since 1982. GroupBC was backed by British Smaller Companies VCT plc and British Smaller Companies VCT2 plc; both are advised by YFM. The exit has delivered a money multiple return well in excess of 3x for the investors.

Wes Simmons, CEO of GroupBC, said: “GroupBC has scaled strongly since the YFM-backed MBO in 2014, breaking new ground with project and asset information solutions for the built environment. We worked closely with YFM, who were a hugely supportive partner, to invest in the sales and operational capabilities of the business and execute our strategy”.

Commenting on the realisation, James Savage, Partner at YFM said: “We backed an ambitious management team in 2014 that has delivered on its plan to position GroupBC as a market-leader and innovator in asset information management systems. It has grown revenues and profits significantly and its customers now include some of the largest infrastructure projects in the UK. We are delighted to have delivered strong returns for our investors with this exit. It is an added bonus to support the GroupBC management team in its endorsement of Bentley Systems as an ideal strategic acquirer to support its colleagues and customers, and to further extend the value of GroupBC offerings into more comprehensive digital twin solutions.”

YFM and the management team were advised by KPMG Corporate Finance (Graham Pearce, Ben Taylor, Ekrem Shahin and Georgia Watt) and Gateley Legal (Rebecca Grisewood, Kate Richards, Poppy Ball).

About YFM Equity Partners

YFM Equity Partners are specialist, independently owned, private equity investors. With over 30 years of experience we seek to unlock value and growth potential by providing up to £10 million of equity to fuel the development of established business throughout the UK regions. We do this by helping our portfolio companies grow niche businesses, launch new initiatives, make transformative acquisitions and upgrade technologies and systems. Through our offices in Leeds, London, Manchester, and Birmingham, we are dedicated to working alongside management teams to create long-term value for our investors, the companies we invest in and a positive economic impact for the communities in which we work. We manage and advise funds in excess of £300 million which include venture capital trusts and private equity funds.

YFM Equity Partners conducts its investment business through its subsidiary YFM Private Equity Limited which is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FRN: 122120).