Vista Equity Partners to acquire Wellington Financial Fund III co. Marketlive

It is always a bittersweet moment when the email comes in: “Hey, we are being acquired by XYZ!”

Since our team entered the U.S. market in 2009, there has been no end of those sorts of emails. Our U.S.-based portfolio just seems to transact on a quarterly basis (even weekly sometimes). Today it is Marketlive, our Petaluma, California-based company that is being acquired as part of an exciting PE-backed roll-up.

Marketlive provides software, services and expertise specifically for mid-sized specialty retailers. One of the appeals to us when we funded in 2011 was that the team had created the industry’s first Commerce-as-a-Service offering, incorporating the company’s hosted eCommerce platform, applied commerce strategy solutions and a powerful network of retailers, technology providers and experts. MarketLive drives hundreds of retail websites generating billions in sales annually.

The Company was backed by a great group of VC investors including Globespan Capital, JAFCO Ventures (now ICON Ventures), Northgate Capital, Sequoia Capital and Sigma Partners.

Marketlive asked us to propose a “one-stop shop” financing, which was a first at the time for our U.S. business. Wellington provided both the revolving line of credit as well as the non-amortizing growth term loan. The management team decided that it was just easier to work with one lender, although our capital is usually junior to a commercial bank revolver.

Founder Ken Burke and his team should be very proud of what they’ve accomplished to date, and what the future holds under Vista Equity Partners’ umbrella.


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Wellington portfolio companies feature again in 2015 Deloitte Fast 50

I’m a bit slow on the reporting here following a long, long trip abroad. Apologies about that.

The 2015 Deloitte Fast 50 list features several of our Fund III and IV portfolio companies:

– Vancouver’s QuickMobile is #21 this year with 421% growth; we are in there with BDC’s VC group, VanCity and the founders

Of the five different 2015 Technology Fast 50™ Leadership award winners, we were delighted to see that two were Wellington Financial Fund III portfolio companies:

– Markham’s Real Matters

– Vancouver’s Vision Critical

That two of the five firms chosen for the Leadership category have successfully grown their companies with our True Growth Capital gives you a sense of what can be done when you partner with Wellington. Flexible, non-dilutive capital from an experienced team.

Congrats are due to all of the winners! The number of new names of this year’s Deloitte list bodes well for the ongoing regeneration of the Canadian innovation ecosystem


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Wellington Financial Fund V is now the largest technology-focused fund in Canada

More news on the state of our Fund V fundraise:

Wellington Financial Hits ‘Hard Cap’ On New $300 Million Fund V

Wellington Financial LP, a privately held specialty finance firm providing growth capital to Canadian, U.S. and U.K.-based companies, is pleased to announce the final fundraising close of its new investment program.

The launch of Wellington Financial Fund V was announced four weeks ago. With today’s second and final close, the firm has hit its ‘hard cap’ of $300 million of subscriptions from Canadian institutional investors and family offices. Wellington Financial Fund V is now the largest technology-focused fund in Canada.

Wellington Financial Fund IV, capitalized with $200 million of re-circulating equity capital in 2012, was a successor fund to three previous entities. Fund IV committed more than $225 million via 28 growth capital transactions over a 3-year period.

“Our corporate passion is to back as many of the best companies as we can find, and this new fund gives us the capital we need to support entrepreneurs in Canada, the United States as well as the United Kingdom,” said Mark McQueen, Wellington Financial’s President and Chief Executive Officer. “Whether you are looking for $2 million or $40 million of growth capital, Wellington will meet your needs with a very attractive cost of capital.”

“Over the past 15 years, Wellington Financial has supported many of North America’s highest quality, privately-held growth stories, including Belair Networks, folioDynamix, Maxymiser, OZ Communications, Real Matters, Vision Critical and Xactly,” continued Ken Rotman, Chairman of Wellington Financial and Co-CEO of Clairvest Group Inc. “This new fund will build on Wellington’s well-earned reputation as an agile, professional, supportive and ethical place to raise growth capital for your business. Just ask some of our portfolio companies….”

“The team at Wellington are true professionals and added meaningful value to our business,” said Joe Consul, CFO of Xactly Corp. of San Jose, California. Added Javier Brage, CFO of New York and London, UK-based Maxymiser: “The Wellington Financial team was true to their word and trusted our executive team.” In June, Xactly, a Wellington Financial Fund IV portfolio company, completed its successful initial public offering on the New York Stock Exchange. In September, Maxymiser, also a Fund IV portfolio company, was acquired by Oracle.

Wellington Financial Fund V will continue to follow the same proven model by assisting both public and private companies with a demonstrated customer following, minimum of $5 million in trailing revenue, talented management and well-defined growth strategies.

The one bit of new information you’ll have noticed is the reference to the United Kingdom. This is a new market for us. Over the past few years, we’ve seen more and more firms with meaningful operations in both the USA and UK. And with those portfolio companies have come new relationships that will invariably breed the odd fabulous referral.

It is quite humbling for our team to have raised 50% more this time than in 2012, particularly for a Canadian-based fund that plays primarily in the tech space. Since 2005, Canadian institutions haven’t been as welcoming of innovation-related GP/LP funds as they could be. We know we are lucky to have landed on the number we did.

Over the past few years, we’ve help entrepreneurs create and/or preserve thousands of innovation jobs on both sides of the border. It’s a luxury to have the chance to work with so many fabulous people, and our team never forgets that.

Please wish us luck on the next phase of our journey.


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Wellington Financial Provides $15 Million Financing to Medical Software Company

We announced our latest growth capital financing this morning; a US$15 million debt financing for a U.S.-based information technology company in the medical software vertical. The details are being kept very quiet for the time being — the reasons for which will become more apparent a few weeks from now.

Over the past 18 months or so, Wellington Financial LP has led more than $140 million in transactions, making it one of the most active funds of its kind in North America.

That said, with our new $300 million fund, there’s still plenty of capital to go around. Please give us a call.


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PE Hub article on Wellington Financial Fund V

You can find the original article here.

Wellington Financial, a Toronto-based specialty finance firm, has raised nearly all of its target of $300 million for its fifth innovation-focused private debt fund.

Wellington President and CEO Mark McQueen told PE Hub Canada that Wellington Financial Fund V secured $285 million of committed capital in a first close held earlier this month. That’s 95 percent of the way to the fund’s hard cap of $300 million. If the firm reaches its target, the new partnership would be 50 percent larger than its predecessor.

Sixteen institutional investors, most of them pension funds and financial institutions, signed up for Fund V, McQueen said. The vast majority are repeat limited partners, several of which re-upped at higher commitment levels than in the past.

Fund V investors included Canadian private equity firm Clairvest Group, which has been an anchor LP in every fund raised by Wellington since its founding in 2000.

McQueen expressed gratitude for the support shown by LPs in Wellington and its investment team. He added that Fund V’s strong showing in its early days of fundraising will not cause Wellington to revise its target.

“Our goal is to keep the fund as small as we can to make sure limited partners are not wasting money on fees,” he said. “Fortunately, we have the luxury of going back to investors for additional capital should we need it down the road.”

Wellington provides term, venture and amortizing loans to North American companies, the bulk of which are in technology sectors. Deals range from $2 million to $40 million in size and typically engage companies with current year revenue in excess of $5 million. Most are venture-backed.

McQueen describes Fund V as a $900 million investment program because capital is recirculated as companies pay off their loans when they are bought, go public, become cash flow positive, or raise a large equity round. The average term of a Wellington loan is about 36 months.

Fund V will show continuity with the firm’s long-standing investment strategy, McQueen said. A larger capital pool will allow it to undertake larger investments. This capability is important to Canadian and U.S.-based entrepreneurs and VC firms who partner with Wellington on a recurring basis.

“The average venture round is getting larger, supporting innovative companies of greater size,” he said. “A larger fund helps us meet the needs of our portfolio companies. It allows us to grow with them and provide financing across their entire investment lifecycle.”

The launch of Wellington Financial Fund V is welcome news to Canada’s VC industry, which has seen improved fundraising of late. Domestic funds accounted for $878 million in committed capital in the first half of 2015, up 21 percent from a year ago, according to Thomson Reuters.

Along with fundraising, Wellington has been an active on the deal front. In September, it invested US$13 million in Aquam, a provider of water infrastructure support and rehabilitation. And this month it contributed to a US$10 million financing of FilmTrack, a media and entertainment content platform.

Wellington has been just as active exiting portfolio companies. To date this year, it has chalked up six closed realizations, including the recent sale of app manager Wmode to AppDirect. Since inception, Wellington has generated a net return of 9.5 percent.

In a PE Hub Canada interview in August, McQueen said Wellington’s innovation-focused lending model offers an all-weather alternative to traditional bank debt and equity. It affords the firm new opportunities in an uncertain market environment.

Since 2004, Wellington has raised $720 million for its funds, including its fifth partnership.

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