Qatari conglomerate acquires IT firm

12 April 2016

Investor aims for controlling stake in French firm

Qatar’s Mannai Corporation has acquired 25 per cent of shares in French IT company GFI Informatique for €142m ($162m), from US/UK-based private equity fund Apax France (jointly with France’s Altamir) and Boussard & Gavaudan.

Mannai plans to acquire a 51 per cent stake in the company

Some shares will be acquired on the French stock exchange for the same price of €8.50 a share, subject to regulatory approval.

Mannai will offer €4.66 for unlisted redeemable share warrants.

The Qatari conglomerate will then acquire any further shares needed to reach a 51 per cent stake from Apax France, Altamir and Boussard & Gavaudan. They will retain a stake in GFI Informatique.

This values the company’s shares at around €566m. Mannai’s investment will be over €289m.

GFI had revenues of €804m in 2015, and net profit of €22m. The acquisition will speed up its planned expansion in Europe, the Middle East and Africa.

Mannai Corporation’s financial advisor is France’s Crédit Agricole Corporate and Investment Bank and Clifford Chance is its legal advisor.

The legal advisors of Apax Partners and Boussard & Gavaudan are local Dethomas Peltier Juvigny & Associes, US-based White & Case and Dentons.

GFI’s advisors are local Edmond de Rothschild Corporate Finance and local Cohen Amir-Aslani.

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