M&A wrap: TPG Growth, Q-Centrix, Sterling, Squire Patton Boggs, Warburg Pincus, Crescent


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TPG Growth is buying health data company Q-Centrix from Sterling Partners. Q-Centrix offers technology-enabled data management services for more than 500 healthcare providers. The company processes more than 2 million data transactions annually related to regulatory matters, clinical registries and infection screenings. “As the trend toward value-based care continues, more and more health systems are relying on quality data to measure clinical outcomes,” says TPG Growth partner Matthew Hobart. “We provide our partners with smart, technology-enabled data management solutions that help streamline operations and improve the safety and quality of care,” adds Q-Centrix CEO Milton Silva-Craig. In today’s climate, medical professionals are looking to reduce costs while improving patient results. That is one of drivers attracting buyers in healthcare data. For example, earlier in 2018, Medidata (Nasdaq: MDSO) agreed to buy the stake it did not already own of Shyft Analytics for $195 million, and Inovalon (Nasdaq: INOV) agreed to buy Ability Network for $1.2 billion. For more on deal trends in the sector, read our story: Why buyers like healthcare analytics. Houlihan Lokey Inc. (NYSE: HLI) and McDermott Will & Emery are advising Q-Centrix and Sterling Partners. Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher is advising TPG Growth. Varagon Capital Partners is providing financing.

Domestic dealmaking may rise in 2019, as companies and investors look closer to home for M&A opportunities because of geopolitical uncertainty and rising protectionism in some key markets, finds Present Perfect, Future Tense: Exploring M&A, a report by Squire Patton Boggs in association with Mergermarket. “The M&A trends identified in the report look set to continue broadly through 2019: liquidity in the system remains high, with strong availability of debt from banks, bond markets and private debt funds,” says a summary of the findings. “However, deal values and volumes could be more affected by the protectionism and shifting policies, which are already having an impact on Chinese and U.S. outbound M&A. Also, the continued uncertainty around Brexit may dampen some appetites for U.K. assets, as the March 2019 deadline approaches. On the other hand, continental Europe may well attract more investor attention, and high growth in India, and economic and corporate governance reforms in Japan suggest these markets could account for an increasing share of global M&A.”

Deal news
Warburg Pincus has announced a first close of about $14 billion for its latest flagship fund, the New York private equity firm’s largest yet. The private equity firm began fundraising in May for Warburg Pincus Global Growth LP with an initial target of $13.5 billion and could raise as much as $17 billion based on investor demand, reports Bloomberg News. Read the full story: Warburg Pincus is said to collect $14 Billion for flagship fund.

Crescent Capital Group has raised its second direct lending fund at $1.6 billion. The fund has committed $750 million across new investments and add-on deals. “This fundraise is our firm’s largest direct lending effort to date,” says Crescent co-founder Jean-Marc Chapus. “Its scale underscores both the number of direct lending opportunities in the U.S. and the confidence that existing and new investors have in our team, especially given the large amount of new entrants and capital into the direct lending space over the past few years.”

For more fundraising news, read our weekly column, PE fundraising scorecard: Carlyle Credit and Thoma Bravo.

Cushman & Wakefield (NYSE: CWK) has bought facilities management provider Quality Solutions from Gridiron Capital. Piper Jaffray (NYSE: PJC) and Finn Dixon & Herling advised the target.

Wind Point Partners-backed Valicor Environment Services has acquired Spirit Services, a wastewater services treatment company.

Brookside Mezzanine Partners has invested in Abcom Technology Group, a provider of technology and rental equipment services to event organizers.

For more deal news, read the Weekly wrap: Ametek, Baird, Kraft Heinz.

Featured content
Private equity firms are giving back – organizing groceries at food pantries, mentoring students in schools, running races for cancer cures and pitching in at animal shelters. In time for the holidays, Mergers & Acquisitions highlights the philanthropic and volunteering initiatives of 5 PE firms: the Carlyle Group LP (Nasdaq: CG), Frontier Capital, Huron Capital, the Riverside Co. and Star Mountain Capital. At Carlyle, charity starts at the top, with CEO David Rubenstein’s signing of The Giving Pledge, a commitment by the world’s wealthiest individuals and families to dedicate the majority of their wealth to philanthropy. Community involvement is more important than ever to today’s work force. Millennials, defined as people born between 1981 and 1996 by the Pew Research Center, are “for sustainability, diversity, inclusion and giving back to the community,” says Carlyle managing director Christopher Ullman. “We are finding this more and more. Yes, we are here to make money, secure retirement for pensioners, but the firm wants to support people’s efforts to make the world a better place.” Frontier Capital supports several causes, including The Miracle League, a baseball organization for people who are mentally and physically challenged. “There’s more to life than work and material things, and our people understand that,” says Frontier managing partner Andrew Lindner. At Detroit-based Huron Capital, the firm’s philanthropic efforts are focused on local groups. “We want to leave our footprint in this community where we live and work while being as helpful as possible,” says partner Gretchen Perkins. “The charitable activities we do as a group, the ability for each employee to influence where Huron’s donations go, and the ability to perform community service during work hours, or receive matching funds for an employee’s personal non-profit passion, all contribute to a portion of an employee’s sense of purpose and contributing to the greater good.” Read the full story, The Big Give.

We asked dealmakers at ACG Philadelphia’s M&A East to share their thoughts on Giving Back. Check out our video interview with Baker Tilly Capital’s Judit Nagy-Eichelber: Volunteer work brings teams together. Also watch our conversation with Reed Smith’s Jonathan Moyer: For millennial dealmakers, giving back is part of who they are.

Holiday shopping is in full swing with Cyber Week, and the pressure on purveyors is more intense than ever, with Sears’ recent bankruptcy filing serving as a cautionary tale. It’s been a year since Amazon bought Whole Foods, a game-changing deal for the sector. Technology is driving many of the transactions. Best Buy Co. (NYSE: BBY) recently agreed to spend $800 million to buy GreatCall, a provider of emergency response services for seniors, from Chicago private equity firm GTCR. Meanwhile, GreatCall announced a partnership with on-demand transportation provider Lyft to make it easier for seniors to get car service. “Many of the challenges that retailers are currently facing are due more to a lack of innovation and investment in technology, and that they are not able to compete with Amazon,” said Alex Monahan, a consumer products senior analyst at tax and consulting firm RSM US LLP. “Investors want to see that retailers are adjusting to consumer’s changing preferences and striving to provide seamless multi-channel experiences, while also investing in technology to address the tight labor markets.” Amazon, Walmart, Ikea, Bed, Bath & Beyond and Farm Boy are among the retailers turning to M&A. For more, see 5 trends driving retail M&A.

The Dallas Cowboys defeated the New Orleans Saints 13-10 on Thursday night to kick off NFL Week 13. Off the field, many football players invest in companies. New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady recently teamed with former Giants defensive end Michael Strahan, who is the co-host of ABC’s Good Morning America, to launch a sports media startup called Religion of Sports Media, which has raised $3 million in venture capital funding from CourtsideVC and Advancit Capital. Muhsin Muhammad, who played wide receiver for the Carolina Panthers and the Chicago Bears, is a managing director of private equity firm Axum Capital Partners. Steve Young, former San Francisco 49ers quarterback, is a co-founder of private equity firm HGGC. View our slideshow, NFL stars Tom Brady, Michael Strahan, Steve Young go PE.

Events
In New York, it’s Middle Market Week. Hosted by ACG New York Nov. 26-30, events throughout the city bring together leading global middle-market dealmaking professionals.

ACG New York Women of Leadership Summit brings together women in the middle-market dealmaking community for a day focused on networking and knowledge sharing on Jan. 17 at the Intercontinental Barclay Hotel. Alexa Von Tobel, chief innovation officer of Northwestern Mutual, keynotes.

Exponent Women kicks off the new year with an evening of networking on Jan. 24 at The Campbell, at New York’s Grand Central Terminal. Jazz Age financier John W. Campbell converted the space to his private office and reception hall in 1923, and it has recently been restored by design firm Ingrao Inc.


Demitri Diakantonis

Demitri Diakantonis

Demitri Diakantonis joined SourceMedia in 2015 and serves as Managing Editor of Mergers & Acquisitions. He covers all aspects of middle-market dealmaking, with a focus on strategic buyers and the consumer and retail sectors, and writes The Buyside column.


Mary Kathleen Flynn

Mary Kathleen Flynn

Mary Kathleen Flynn joined SourceMedia in 2011, serving as the Editor-in-Chief of Mergers & Acquisitions. MK oversees the brand’s content on all media platforms, including website, e-newsletters, video, slideshows, podcasts and print.