Blackbaud to Snatch MicroEdge for $160M

NEW YORK (The Deal) -- Blackbaud (BLKB)   scored a surprise acquisition Tuesday, Sept. 2, by agreeing to acquire philanthropic technology provider MicroEdge from private equity owner Vista Equity Partners for $160 million.

The Charleston, S.C., nonprofit software provider said in a statement it will finance the deal with cash and its credit facility. It expects the transaction to close in the fourth quarter. The purchase would mark the software maker's first sizable deal since its acquisition of Convio for $275 million in 2012.

As for Vista of Austin, Texas, the deal's valuation is far above the $30 million the firm paid to Advent Inc. in 2009 for MicroEdge. PE firm Bregal Sagemount also has been a minority owner in MicroEdge since early 2013.

"MicroEdge is a great story of a business transformation: taking a solid, but orphaned, franchise within a larger organization and revitalizing its mission," Vista Equity Partners principal Alan Cline said in an e-mail. "MicroEdge clients and employees alike have benefited from our investments over the years, in addition to the innovation that MicroEdge products now provide their clients."

MicroEdge spokeswoman Kathy Krais declined to comment further on the deal, but she said MicroEdge is excited to move forward with the agreement.

"It's a nice deal for everybody, especially for Vista," said Gene Ramirez, a managing director of New York investment bank Morgan Joseph TriArtisan.

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