Astorg is to acquire a majority stake in UK-based legal disputes platform Opus 2, a portfolio company of Five Arrows Principal Investments, the investment arm of Edmond de Rothschild.
The deal will see Five Arrows and the company's management team reinvest in the business.
The deal valued Opus 2 at around €350m, a source close to the situation told Unquote.
Astorg is deploying equity via its Mid-Cap fund, which invests in companies with enterprise values of €150-400m. Opus 2 is the first deal from the fund.
According to a statement, Astorg will aim to support Opus 2's geographical expansion, particularly in the US, and in the international arbitration market.
Five Arrows acquired a minority stake in Opus 2 in August 2017 via Five Arrows Principal Investments II, which closed on €775m in October 2015. The fund makes equity investments of €20-70m, targeting businesses valued in the €50-500m range.
At the time of Five Arrows' investment, the company reported revenues of £11.8m in the year ending in March 2016, with an operating profit of £3.1m, and employed 150 staff.
During the investment period, in February 2021, Opus 2 acquired UK-based Bar Squared, a developer of barristers' chambers management software.
Founded in 2008 and headquartered in London, Opus 2 is a legal technology platform for law firms that allows parties in a dispute to organise virtual hearings and exchange documents, as well as providing court reporting and real-time transcription services.
According to its latest publicly available accounts, the company generated revenues of £20.8m and operating profit of £4.3m in the financial year ending in March 2020, compared with turnover of £16.9m and operating profit of almost £4m in the previous financial year.
Opus 2 – Graham Smith-Bernal (founder); Martin Coen (CEO).
Astorg – Charles-Hubert Le Baron (director); Lionel de Posson (managing partner of Astorg Mid-Cap).
Five Arrows Principal Investments – Sacha Oshry (managing director).
Equity – Raymond James (M&A); BCG (commercial due diligence); EY (financial due diligence, tax); Latham & Watkins (legal); Dickson Minto (legal); Intuitus (financial due diligence).
Vendor – Harris Williams (M&A); Oliver Wyman (commercial due diligence); Grant Thornton (financial due diligence); Shoosmiths (legal); Dickson Minto (legal); CMS (legal); Crosslake (technology due diligence).
Management – Jamieson (corporate finance).
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