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Market leading companies combine to form a unified global source for automotive, equipment and working capital financing software solutions serving a $7Tn secured finance end market

MINNEAPOLIS, MN and MILTON KEYNES U.K.—IDS, a leader in enterprise mission-critical solutions for secured finance, has agreed to acquire White Clarke Group, a leading provider of retail, fleet, wholesale and asset finance solutions for the automotive and equipment finance markets. The two companies combine to create a multi-asset class secured finance technology powerhouse supporting banks, independents, OEM captives and specialty finance firms globally. Together, the combined company will serve more than 300 customers across North America, Europe and Asia Pacific and will be co-headquartered in Minneapolis, MN and Milton Keynes, U.K.

“Global business has entered a new long-term investment cycle driven by the rapid evolution of technology,” commented David Hamilton, CEO of IDS. “Smart factories, connected-assets (IoT), green-energy, and many other technology innovations will bring about exciting new economic growth opportunities which will require access to capital from secured finance firms. With a comprehensive and flexible technology foundation, these finance providers will be able to support new funding models accelerating the move to digital, servitization, and mobility. Supporting this fast-changing market need is the motivation for bringing our two great companies together creating an unmatched range of secured finance solutions and the ability to support customers globally.”

IDS and White Clarke Group together provide a comprehensive portfolio of products across multiple market segments including:

  • Automotive Finance (Retail, Fleet, and Wholesale) – CALMS is a full lifecycle system including point-of-sale, loan origination, loan servicing, and floorplanning capabilities serving 8 of the top 10 auto manufacturers representing 25 brands.
  • Equipment / Asset Finance – end-to-end platform for leasing and loan origination and portfolio management with more than $350bn of net asset value running on the solution.
  • Working Capital – (Asset-based lending and Factoring) – a comprehensive solution providing the ability to manage flexible working capital finance offerings with real-time credit monitoring and availability. Managing c.$50bn in factoring volume annually.

“Our industry is being disrupted by a global shift in consumption,” added Brendan Gleeson, Group CEO of White Clarke Group. “Consumers and businesses want utility and outcomes, not ownership. This has created an opportunity for financing firms to tap into emerging technologies including digital and AI to create new business models like subscription and car sharing. As these trends accelerate, these firms will need the support of a global technology vendor that can deliver innovation at scale. Combining our companies provides the ability to innovate at the pace of change while delivering exceptional value to our combined customer base.”

“We’re thrilled to support IDS in taking this transformational step,” said A.J. Rohde, a Senior Partner at Thoma Bravo. “IDS and White Clarke Group have both invested in building industry-leading solutions which serve many of the worlds top financial services and automotive brands. The combination creates an exciting and truly unique proposition for the secured finance market, with a world-class team and global scale.”

“It has been our privilege to partner with White Clarke Group and help it transition from a founder-led UK focused business to a global player with a more recurring revenue model. We are very excited about the combination of IDS and White Clarke Group, and look forward to helping in the creation of value in the combined company over the next few years,” further remarked Vivek Kumar, Partner at Five Arrows Principal Investments.

White Clarke Group was established in 1992 and has built a strong track record in providing specialized technology and software solutions to the automotive and asset finance markets. The company’s CALMS (Customer Acquisition & Lifecycle Management System) product range supports the complete lifecycle of auto and asset finance, leasing, and loan origination from point-of-sale through credit approval, contract management and customer support. The company has offices in the U.K., U.S., Canada, Australia, Austria, Germany, India and China.

IDS is acquiring White Clarke Group from Five Arrows Principal Investments, who originally invested in the business in 2016 and will remain a shareholder in the combined company.

The transaction is expected to close before the end of Q2 2021. For more details please visit www.idsgrp.com/whiteclarkegroup-acquisition

The financial terms of the deal have not been disclosed.

Five Arrows was advised by Robert W. Baird & Co and Shoosmiths LLP. IDS and Thoma Bravo were advised by Kirkland & Ellis LLP.

About IDS
IDS offers a suite of secured finance technologies to help banks, specialty finance firms and captive finance organizations drive operational efficiency and growth. Organizations of all sizes rely on our technologies and consultative services to optimize their asset finance, asset-based lending and factoring operations. Our software solutions are built on IDScloud, a true software-as-a-service (SaaS) platform that offers best-in-class simplicity, scalability and affordability. IDS serves a global customer base from offices in the United States, the United Kingdom and Australia.

The company’s headquarters are located in Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA.

For more information visit www.idsgrp.com.

About White Clarke Group
Founded in 1992, White Clarke Group provides a range of full lifecycle loan origination and contract management software for the automotive, consumer and equipment finance sectors. As a global organization, it currently employs 600 finance and technology professionals across its offices in the UK, mainland Europe, North America and Asia Pacific. Its clients include 8 of the top 10 global automotive captives.

For more information visit www.whiteclarkegroup.com.

About Thoma Bravo
Thoma Bravo is a leading private equity firm focused on the software and technology-enabled services sectors. With more than $76 billion in assets under management as of December 31, 2020, Thoma Bravo partners with a company’s management team to implement operating best practices, invest in growth initiatives and make accretive acquisitions intended to accelerate revenue and earnings, with the goal of increasing the value of the business. The firm has offices in San Francisco and Chicago, with a planned expansion to Miami in the second half of 2021.

For more information, visit www.thomabravo.com.

About Five Arrows Principal Investments
Five Arrows Principal Investments (FAPI) is the European private equity arm of Rothschild & Co’s Merchant Banking business which has a series of funds dedicated to corporate private equity, credit, primary and secondary fund investing and co-investments.

FAPI is focused on investing in middle-market companies with highly defensible market positions; strong management teams; business models with high visibility of organic unit volume growth and strong free cash flow conversion; and multiple operational levers that can be used to unlock latent value. Sectors are limited to data and software, technology-enabled business services and healthcare.

Read the release on the IDS website here.