Carlyle Group has sold UK-based software testing company Eggplant to Keysight Technologies for $330m. The firm scored a seven times return on the exit, a person familiar with the matter told Private Equity News.
Eggplant provides automated and AI-driven software testing tools for clients across different industries, including financial services, healthcare, retail, telecom, and media. Its products enable organisations to test, monitor, and report on the quality and responsiveness of software applications across different interfaces, platforms, browsers, and devices.
Founded in 2008 and headquartered in London, the company was formerly known as Testplant and got acquired by Carlyle in 2016. Since then, Eggplant has tripled its revenues, the firm said, to $38m in 2019.
“Carlyle has been a valuable partner for Eggplant’s management team over the past four years, supporting the business to deliver strong growth and innovative customer solutions, as the business has established itself as an industry leader,” said Dr John Bates, Eggplant’s CEO.
Following the transaction, Bates will join the Keysight leadership team reporting to Soon-Chai Gooi, president of company’s Electronic Industrial Solutions Group, Keysight said.
The deal marks the sixth exit from Carlyle Europe Technology Partners (CETP) III fund, which closed in 2015 at €656m. The vehicle is a pan-European strategy focusing on buyout investments in telecoms, media, and technology.
Carlyle closed its latest Europe-focused fund in October 2019. Carlyle Europe Partners V raised €6.4bn from investors, exceeding its target by almost €1bn.
As of 31 March, the firm had $217bn in assets across four business segments: corporate private equity, real assets, global credit, and investment solutions. Carlyle employs more than 1,775 people in 32 offices across six continents, it said in a statement.
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