Friday 23 March 2018

Globoforce limbers up for a $200m Nasdaq flotation

Roisin Burke

Former Davy names, Riverdeep founders, an IL&P boss and Balderton Capital could be the winners as Globoforce prepares for a Nasdaq float.

A value of $200m based on reported revenues of $125m has been suggested. The company has profits north of $6m.

Founded in Ireland, Globoforce provides Fortune 500 companies like DHL and Symantec with a way to give online reward vouchers to staff. Right now it is paving the IPO ground and has talked to several banks though it has yet to hire one to prepare for listing. Its current bankers are Ulster, BoI and Silicon Valley Bank.

Similar (though bigger scale) businesses are highly sought after at present.

Software giant SAP recently paid $3.4bn for 'talent management' company Successfactors, which raised $90.2m on floating a few years back. Oracle bought Nasdaq-listed Taleo in February for $1.9bn. Both were purchased for over 10 times their revenues.

A source close to the company said that Globoforce plans to pull the trigger on an IPO towards the end of this year.

Major investors include Barry Maloney's Balderton Capital and US private equity firm Atlas to the tune of around €13m. Riverdeep founders Patricia Burke and Ed Wallace have stakes, as does CEO Eric Mosely.

Former Irish Life & Permanent treasury head David Gantly also holds a stake.

The firm was started in 1998 by former insurance exec Eddie Reynolds and software egghead Eric Mosely. It was funded with seed capital from Davy Stockbrokers and several Davy employees are investors.

The business's HQ is now in Boston, with its European operation in Dublin.

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