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Ardian acquires 49 per cent stake in Micropross

Ardian, formerly AXA Private Equity, has acquired a 49 per cent stake in Micropross, a provider of smart card testing solutions and communicating objects.

The transaction was completed alongside Philippe Bacle, CEO, and Max-André Lepoutre, managing director, who continue to lead the company and retain a majority stake in the company.
Founded in 1979 in Lille, France, Micropross supplies products and solutions for the smartcard industry.
Following a 2008 management buy-out led by Bacle and Lepoutre, Micropross has enjoyed a strong period of growth. Eighty per cent of the group’s sales now achieved outside France.
Bacle says: “Ardian’s investment will allow us to accelerate our growth strategy, with a particular focus on contactless smart card payment solutions. In addition, Ardian’s international network will allow us to consolidate our position in the US and in Asia.”
François Jerphagnon, managing director of small market enterprise capital at Ardian, says: “As a key player in smart card testing solutions, Microposs is a great partnership opportunity for Ardian. Thanks to its technologically advanced products and the strength of its management team, Micropross will now move into a new phase of development in the context of this fast growing market.”

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