Partners Group, a global private markets firm, has, on behalf of its clients, agreed to sell Straive, a global provider of technology-driven content and data solutions, to funds affiliated with Baring Private Equity Asia (BPEA).
Established in 1980 and headquartered in Singapore, Straive provides a suite of technology-driven platforms and services for the creation, enrichment, and dissemination of e-learning content, research content, and specialised data solutions. The Company today has over 17,000 employees in 15 locations across the Philippines, Singapore, India, China, Vietnam, US, UK, and Nicaragua.
Partners Group acquired a majority stake in Straive, then known as SPi Global, in August 2017. Under Partners Group’s ownership, Straive has transformed from a provider of primarily content services into a technology-driven content, data, and EdTech solutions company. It continues to be the global market leader in Research Content Services, and its expanded digital service offerings have established strong positions in the Data Solutions and EdTech markets. Straive’s organic growth has been supplemented with three strategic bolt-on acquisitions between 2018 and 2020. Other major initiatives have included the development of proprietary technology and software products, as well as the deepening of strategic customer relationships.
Cyrus Driver, Managing Director, Private Equity Technology, Partners Group, says: “When we invested in Straive in 2017, we aligned upfront with management and the board on a transformation plan. We took Straive’s strengths in process automation and content operations and applied them to broader end markets with higher growth, playing into the themes of e-learning and big data. Straive’s team has executed exceptionally under Ratan’s executive leadership and Vikram’s board leadership. The team at Partners Group takes great satisfaction that Straive today is stronger than ever and its best years are still ahead of it.”
Ratan Datta, Chief Executive Officer, Straive, says: “Straive has been on an incredible growth journey under Partners Group’s value-added ownership. SPi’s recent rebranding to Straive marks our more advanced offering and increased focus on technology-driven solutions. We have started to see the fruits of investing behind and expanding our addressable markets. We thank Partners Group for their value creation approach, platform building contributions, and financial resources, which have been crucial in transforming our business. We now look forward to working with BPEA on our exciting next chapter.”
Vikram Talwar, Chairman of the Board, Straive, says: “On behalf of the Board, I would like to congratulate Ratan and the first-rate leadership at Straive for successfully executing an ambitious strategic plan set out by the Board. My fellow Board members have played a valuable role in charting strategic direction and supporting key management initiatives. We believe together with Ratan’s team, Straive is now positioned as a leading, future-ready provider of critical content, data, and EdTech platform services. I am confident the business will go from strength to strength under the new ownership.”
Yuan En Lim, Member of Management, Private Equity, Partners Group, adds: “Our joint value creation plan with management has enabled Straive, already a leader in Research Content and Data Solutions, to build a strong presence in the high-growth digital education market. We believe the Company is set to continue its growth trajectory as recent investments begin to pay-off fully. We have really enjoyed partnering closely with Straive’s talented leadership in true Partners Group tradition.”
JPMorgan acted as exclusive financial advisor to Partners Group on the transaction. Latham & Watkins and EY also advised Partners Group on the transaction.