PE firms look to ICT acquisitions

Eighty four per cent of private equity investors backing information and communication technologies plan to undertake an acquisition in the sector over the next 12 months, according to a survey conducted by Grant Thornton.

The survey, which involved 40 private equity investors, also revealed that 90% of respondents believe the most likely exit strategy in the coming months will be through a trade sale.

In the ICT sector, cloud computing received the most attention, with 89% of the private equity houses saying that software as a service and cloud computing are the most attractive investments in the ICT sector over the next 12 months.

Wendy Hart, corporate finance advisory partner at Grant Thornton, said: “Our survey indicates that there will be stiff competition for quality ICT assets in the coming months. Seventy two per cent of existing private equity backers of ICT expect an overall increase in investments in the sector and an increasing number of private equity houses are looking to move into the ICT space.”

Although still attractive, green IT received the least amount of praise, with only 39% of respondents planning to invest in the area this year.