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France’s Wavestone acquires IT consultancy Xceed

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France’s leading independent consultancy Wavestone has acquired UK IT consultancy Xceed Group who were advised by corporate finance advisor BCMS.  

Established in London in 2003, Xceed Group is a leading technology consultancy which provides professional advisory services to major financial services organisations.

The group helps retail banks, insurance companies and financial data processors plan and deliver complex IT change programmes, including banking platform modernisation, IT infrastructure transformation, card engagement platforms, digital transformation, and strategic sourcing.

Around 80% of Xceed’s revenue comes from financial services clients. For the fiscal year to 30 Nov 2017, Xceed reported an 8% increase in revenue to £13.3m (€15.3m), and an adjusted EBITDA margin of circa 20%. (Figures exclude Xceed’s Flexible Infrastructure Managed Services activity, which is not part of the acquisition scope). 

Deal rationale

The transaction accelerates Wavestone’s 2021 strategic plan to expand internationally. Xceed will play a key role in promoting Wavestone’s value proposition in the UK and US, enhancing its ability to deliver complementary services globally for its financial services client base.

For Xceed’s 60 permanent staff, they will benefit from being part of a dynamic growing group with a greater international reach.

Deal structure

The transaction is a 100% acquisition by Wavestone of Xceed’s capital in the UK and US. The operation excludes FIMS activity, which will continue to operate under the current Xceed shareholders.

Xceed CEO John Casserly will stay with the combined business for a six to 12 months period to ensure a smooth transition, supported by a five-strong leadership team who are staying in the business.

The acquisition has been paid in cash and funded through an existing credit line negotiated with Wavestone's banks.

BCMS (Andy Denny, Rob Goulding, Simon Glover, Oxana Zyrianova, Simon Preedy) acted as corporate finance advisor to Xceed and introduced the business to Wavestone, with legal advice from Freeths LLP.

BCMS Lead Advisor Andy Denny commented: “This was a very competitive bidding process, but the clear synergies from a tie-up between Wavestone and Xceed were compelling. Once again, this transaction demonstrates that business owners need to think globally to secure the best deal when planning their exit. We wish everyone the best for the next chapter for Xceed and Wavestone.”

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Posted Apr 2018
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