Bridgepoint to buy eFront: sources

Francisco Partners has found a buyer for eFront, according to three sources.

Bridgepoint is the acquirer, two of the sources said. The U.K. private equity firm is paying about 300 million euros ($355.1 million) for eFront, one of the people said.

Francisco Partners bought a majority stake in eFront, a software provider for PE firms and LPs, in September 2011, according to a statement from that time. The whole company was valued at 68 million euros ($88 million), the statement said.

In the fall, Francisco tapped Barclays to find a buyer for the financial software company. efront was expected to sell for $400 million.

With offices in San Francisco and London, Francisco Partners invests in sectors such as software, security and healthcare IT. The firm’s last fund, Francisco Partners III L.P., closed at $2 billion in February 2011. That fund generated a net IRR of 19.8 percent and a 1.3x investment multiple as of June 30, according to CalPERS, an investor in the fund.

Francisco is out marketing for its fourth PE fund. Francisco Partners IV LP has a target of $2 billion. The PE firm increased the hard cap for Fund IV to $2.8 billion from $2.5 billion, Dow Jones LBO Wire said.

News of Bridgepoint’s discussions for eFront was previously reported by French newspaper L’AGEFI.

Francisco Partners and eFront couldn’t immediately be reached for comment. Bridgepoint did not return calls.

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