Financial investors who in 2011 have backed the management buy-out of LiveChat Software, have finalized a series of transactions through which they have virtually exited their investment in Wroclaw-based company. Their shares were purchased by financial institutions and by the founders of LiveChat Software active on the managing board and the supervisory board.
„Today, we would like to officially welcome new shareholders and give our thanks to those, who were with us since the management buyout in 2011. For financial investors that’s a long time, but the investment has turned highly profitable for them. Support by Tar Heel Capital and its partners was very valuable for us, both at the MBO stage and during the IPO and our debut on the Warsaw stock exchange,” chief executive Mariusz Ciepły said.
LiveChat Software was founded in 2002 by Mariusz Ciepły, Maciej Jarzębowski and Jakub Sitarz. In 2008-2011 period it was owned by GG Network, a part of Naspers Group. In 2011 the company went through a management buyout in which the founders and key managers regained control over the company. At the same time, PE fund Tar Heel Capital and its partners, who backed the transaction, became shareholders of LiveChat Software. In April 2014, the company debuted on the Warsaw Stock Exchange.
On Tuesday, Copernicus Capital Towarzystwo Funduszy Inwestycyjnych S.A., a mutual fund manager, notified LiveChat Software that two of its shareholders have launched an accelerated book-building process in order to execute a block trade. On Friday Copernicus announced that the shares were sold by Fulcrum FIZ and Napoleon FIZ, two of the mutual funds it manages and that consequently their stake in LiveChat Software fell below 5% threshold.
Shares of LiveChat Software were purchased by financial institutions which invest on the Warsaw Stock Exchange and by all three members of the founding team.
LiveChat Software is controlled by a shareholder consortium which consists of the founders and key managers. None of them has sold shares in the recent transaction and the consortium controls a combined stake accounting for c. 47% of LiveChat Software’s initial equity.
As of September 1, LiveChat Software had almost 21.500 clients from around 150 countries worldwide. LiveChat solution is being used by companies from virtually all industries, including Sony Mobile, Stripe, Hulu, BenQ, Orange, Adobe, Samsung, Pizza Hut, Ryanair, Macy’s, PBS, NetApp and numerous others, public institutions, including the US State Department, universities, such as Stanford and even sports clubs, including Tottenham Hotspur and the Vancouver Canucks. North America remains the key market for the company and the US alone accounts for over 50% of its client base.
LiveChat solution makes it possible to contact users visiting client’s website and contains various features supporting sales or customer service departments, as well as analytical tools.
In 1Q of the year 2017/2018, which begun on April 1, LiveChat Software reported consolidated sales of PLN 21.59 mln, a 30.2% increase year-on-year. Net profit totaled PLN 11.07 m and was up by 21% compared to the year before.
EBIT in the April to July period rose by 22.3% to PLN 13.74 m and EBITDA by 23.3% to PLN 14.29 m. EBITDA margin in 1Q has reached 66.2%, operating margin 63.7% and net margin 51.3%.
About the company
LiveChat Software S.A. is a provider of software for direct online communications between website owner and its users. The company is offering its services in a SaaS model, which makes it possible for people with no programming experience to install the LiveChat service in just a few minutes. Services are offered via www.livechatinc.com website. LiveChat Software has over 21.000 clients in over 150 countries and generates most of its sales in the US and the UK. It offers services to clients such as Orange, Adobe, Samsung, Tele2, NetApp, Kaspersky Lab, Macy’s, Pizza Hut, PBS, Ryanair and Air Asia. It is one of global leaders of live chat type software. On April 11th, 2014, the company debuted on the main market of the Warsaw Stock Exchange and in November 2015 its market cap topped PLN 1 bn.