At the start of this year, Francisco Partners acquired the venerable Grass Valley Group; once Nevada County's largest private employer, GVG was founded half a century ago by Doc Hare (link), was sold to Tektronix and then later to Thomson/Technicolor.
( And got rechristened "Grass Valley" somewhere along the way, by some nimrod afflicted with googling namespace myopia.)
Nevada County newsmeister Jeff Pelline applauded the acquisition:
"San Francisco-based Francisco Partners ... is a blue-chip private equity firm that can be expected to keep the big high-tech firm [GVG] intact and lend needed stability to its operations. The deal ... also could help raise our area’s stature in tech, with some key Silicon Valley connections.... Founded in 1999, Francisco is literally a “who’s who” of Silicon Valley’s most successful luminaries. Its founders include “Sandy” Robertson, an investment banking guru going back to the ’70s who is the champion of high tech. ... the kicker: Francisco’s strategic partner is Sequoia Capital, one of Silicon Valley’s most storied venture capital firms ... has helped take Google, Yahoo and Cisco public — among tech’s most famous firms."Francisco Partners has reach; as you read below, consider all that its stable of companies can do:
- Aconex offers "on-demand document management, online project management, correspondence management, risk management, and web collaboration technology solutions to the construction and natural resources industries. More than 160,000 construction and engineering industry professionals worldwide use Aconex...[to] view, track and distribute their files in real time, regardless of their location..... Clients include IKEA, Brookfield Multiplex, Grocon, Hansen Yuncken, Las Vegas Sands, and McDonald's Restaurants."
- Aderant "provides financial, resource and practice management software... to the largest and most prominent service organizations in the world, including Clifford Chance, Computer Sciences Corporation, Greenberg Traurig, Clayton Utz, Deloitte Consulting, Macleod Dixon LLP, Mayer Brown Rowe & Maw LLP, Skadden Arps and Winston & Strawn...[It's Atlanta-based but] also has offices in Asia Pacific and Europe."
- AdvancedMD medical billing software; "thousands of providers nationwide".
- Sold to 3M a year ago was Tel Aviv-based Attenti, "a leading global provider of remote people monitoring technologies...a record of developing innovative technology ... business partners are private and public organizations, monitoring service providers, security and telecommunications companies, as well as government agencies in over 25 countries around the world. "
- Barracuda Networks, making "spam, spyware, virus and IM threat protection appliances...for businesses of all sizes... Barracuda Spam Firewall provides protection for over 30,000 customers throughout the world, including Adaptec, Knight Ridder, Caltrans, CBS, Georgia Institute of Technology, IBM, NASA, Pizza Hut, Union Pacific Railroad, and the U.S. Treasury Department."
- Blue Coat secures Web communications and accelerates business applications across the distributed enterprise.... deployed in branch offices, Internet gateways, end points, and data centers – provide intelligent points of policy-based control enabling IT organizations to optimize security and accelerate performance for all users and applications. ... more than 8,000 customers worldwide
- C-MAC MicroTechnology , "high-performance, high-reliability ("HiRel") microcircuits and frequency control products", "...aimed at new high-reliability applications such as security cameras and covert radio communications devices, which by their nature must be small and unobtrusive." (*)
- Dextrys, "Making China Easy TM", "a leading provider of information technology (IT) outsourcing and consulting services and a trusted gateway to China’s emerging IT economy... Its customers, more than 300 financial services, insurance, healthcare and high-tech companies, gain local accountability, rich domain experience and high-quality outsourced development capabilities..."
- "Discrete Wireless is a leading provider of mobile resource management solutions in the United States. The [Atlanta-based] company uses web-hosted software-as-a-service solutions in concert with Global Positioning Satellite based hardware to help local fleet managers...[track the vehicles] in their geographically dispersed mobile fleets. ...serves more than 5,000 companies and manages over 60,000 subscribers. "
- EF Johnson Technologies offers "secure communications solutions to organizations whose mission is to protect and save lives. ... first responders in public safety and public service, the federal government, and industrial organizations."
- Ex Libris Group - Automation solutions for academic libraries...for electronic, digital, and print material... serving thousands of sites in more than 70 countries on six continents.
- GXS ... "operates a highly-reliable, secure global network services platform enabling more than 35,000 businesses, including 75 percent of the Fortune 500, to conduct business together in real time."
- Healthland - offers "IT solutions to the small community and critical access hospital market... to manage, integrate and access key financial, clinical and patient information."
- Hypercom, "one of the largest global providers of complete electronic payment solutions and value-added services at the point of transaction. ...provides support and related services, which include maintenance, 24/7 management and monitoring of customer networks, on-site technology assessments, network training, and design and implementation. Hypercom’s customers include domestic and international financial institutions, electronic payment processors, retailers, independent sales organizations and distributors....[and] companies in the hospitality, transportation, healthcare, prepaid card and restaurant industries. ... acquired the e-Transactions business units of Thales SA... secure card payment solutions in France, Germany, the United Kingdom, Spain, Belgium and Sweden." (based in Phoenix, AZ)
- Masternaut, "managing the mobile workforce" - "vehicle tracking, fleet and driver management solutions... a 10,000-strong customer base across 32 countries. (*)
(merged with Cybit Positioning Solutions, "the world leader in telemetry, tracking and positioning solutions. By integrating advanced data communications with positioning technologies Cybit... has developed a range of technically advanced tracking solutions... There are no constraints on how our systems and products can be used to create custom solutions. Our technical sales team will happily help you put together a system to meet your needs. " (*); one product, "Cybit Asset Locator™ supplies fundamental vehicle data to managers via an easy-to-use web-based application. .. Time-triggered data transfers report on mileage, fuel consumption, precise position and routes travelled. (*))
- MetaSwitch Networks - "high performance, portable software components... integrated into the products of the world's leading communications equipment manufacturers."
- Mincom - "leading global provider of enterprise asset management and resource management software for companies in heavy asset-intensive industries"; "... specialize in solutions for: Mining, Public Infrastructure, Energy, Oil & Gas, Defense". (Brisbane, Australia)
- Mitel Networks -" communications solutions for a range of organizations...from an outright capital purchase to a managed service"
- Quadramed - "clinical, financial, and health information management software solutions for hospitals and hospital networks... [Used by] over 15% of all hospitals in the United States..."
- Quantros - "software and services provider for the healthcare industry in ...safety and risk management, quality and performance improvement, accreditation and compliance, real-time surveillance and centralized decision support....[Used by] more than 2,000 healthcare facilities..."
- Specific Media - "online advertising network..enabling advertisers, marketers and agencies to target consumers based on demographics, behaviors, geographic locations and/or the contextual relevance of websites visited."; "partner of choice for brand advertisers, with a notable Fortune 500 advertiser base and a roster of name brand publisher partners."
"As consumers discover new ways to consume content in the digital era, Specific Media will make sure brands reach them in the ways they desire."
- T-System - "emergency department clinical documentation tools, with approximately 40% of the nation’s emergency departments using T-System’s products....more than 1,800 civilian and military emergency departments in the United States, Puerto Rico and Australia".
- WatchGuard - network security....protects against emerging threats and provides the platform to integrate additional services offered by the company. ...products include a LiveSecurity Service subscription..."
Other companies are listed on the Francisco Partners website, but these were among the more interesting.