Norwegian software powerhouse Visma brings new investors on board at $12.2 billion valuation

Norway-born SaaS company Visma, which offers a suite of accounting, payroll, HR and other business software products to more than one million SME customers across the Nordic, Benelux and Baltic regions, has received investments from existing and new investors valuing the business at $12.2 billion.

London-based software investor Hg, which led the original delisting of Visma from the Oslo Stock Exchange in 2006 and has been the lead or co-lead investor in the company for the last 14 years, has increased its stake and remains the majority shareholder at about 54 percent. 

Its ‘Hg Saturn 2 Fund’ will purchase the stake from Montagu, a European PE firm which has been an investor in the business since 2010. Private equity and growth investors TPG and Warburg Pincus have come on board as new backers, while existing investors CPPIB and General Atlantic also bought additional stakes. 

Privately-held Visma has matured from focusing mostly on the Nordics to becoming one of Europe’s most business-critical software providers for the private and public sectors, buoyed in part because of the rapid shift to cloud providers and digital services, and the impact of the global coronavirus pandemic.

Visma CEO Merete Hverven said: “For almost 15 years now, Visma has benefited from a supportive and highly knowledgeable private equity investor base. Their guidance and know-how in the software sector has enabled us to consistently expand both our product offering and geographic footprint. This includes a significant investment in cloud computing which has strengthened both our customer and shareholder value. As we continue to invest in world-class technology, including new areas of innovation such as AI and machine learning, we warmly welcome this new investment. We also highly value the support we continually receive from our existing investors. We look forward to continuing Visma’s strategy to create a fully online ecosystem for businesses across Europe.”

The company is rather acquisitive; this year alone, it has bought Circle Software, Onguard, FirstAgenda, 1st Web, Draftit, Specter, Nmbrs, Zetech and Yuki.

Partly thanks to those acquisitions, Visma currently employs about 11,000 employees.