Hg to invest in financial software firm smartTrade

UK-based private equity firm Hg, has agreed to acquire stake in smartTrade Technologies, a French electronic trading solutions firm, from Keensight Capital and Pléiade Venture, for an undisclosed amount.

Under the transaction agreement, smartTrade CEO and co-founder David Vincent and the management team will remain as stakeholders in the company along with Hg, after the stake purchase.

Vincent said: “The success of our business is based on continued innovation and technological advancement, putting R&D at the heart of our business. Welcoming Hg, a real expert in software and technology in this sector, creates a truly compelling offering. I am personally very excited about the prospects of the business.

“Keensight Capital and Pléiade Venture have played a decisive role in our growth to date, and we are grateful of their involvement. Now, with Hg’s support, alongside the smartTrade team, I am committed to further developing a great service for our customers, as they look to modernise their own systems.”

smartTrade offers trading solutions for foreign exchange, fixed income, equities and derivatives

smartTrade is a provider of services and hosted software for trading desks. Its liquidity management solutions enable financial institutions to develop effective trading platforms.

The company has a global client base, and operates through its subsidiaries located in London, Geneva, Milan, New York, Tokyo and Singapore, across the world. Its clients range from banks, brokers and hedge funds to proprietary trading desks.

The stake acquisition in smartTrade represents Hg’s seventh investment in technology businesses serving the capital markets and wealth and asset management sectors. Hg will make the investment from the Mercury 2 Fund.

Currently, Hg has approximately €12bn ($13.14m) worth funds under management.

The proposed transaction is subject to customary closing conditions including consultations with the French workers’ council.

For the transaction, White & Case, Deloitte and Bryan, Garnier & Co. served as investment advisors for Hg, while Arma Partners and Hoche Partners served as advisors for smartTrade.