2013

Year

Technology

Sector

Datong plc

Client

Seven Technologies

Acquired By

Datong plc / Seven Technologies

Cavendish Corporate Finance is pleased to announce that it has successfully advised on the £7.3 million public to private sale of spyware and intelligence solutions leader Datong plc to Seven Technologies Holdings, an engineering business specialising in the manufacture of communication applications for operation in inhospitable environments.

The deal creates a £20 million annual turnover company, which will be one of the strongest independent players in the sector, with an enhanced capability to develop next-generation solutions for its increasingly global client base.

Datong has for over 30 years specialised in providing a range of covert surveillance, tracking and location systems to defence, security and law enforcement agencies worldwide and its robust family of products and systems are designed to provide reliable, uncompromising intelligence in the most challenging operational environments.

The type, size, technology, methods and intensity of both terrorist and crime organisations, their activities and arenas, are constantly shifting and posing new threats. Datong’s products and solutions help police and security agencies to gather early intelligence so that they can identify and anticipate threats and illegal activity and act to thwart them.

Headquartered in Leeds, Datong also has offices in the US and Malaysia and a range of security clients spanning over 30 countries, which the company helps ensure maintain a technology advantage over their increasingly sophisticated and determined adversaries.

Seven Technologies Holdings is the parent company of Northern Ireland-based Seven Technologies Limited (STL), which has been trading since 2005. Last year YFM Equity Partners, a specialist SME fund manager, paid £6.6 million to take a stake in Seven to help SLT’s growth and development.

Both sets of management believe that the two businesses are an excellent fit and that there is a strong commercial and cultural affinity between Datong and Seven, in terms of their strategies, products and service offerings.

Combining the two businesses creates a larger and stronger group within the specialist intelligence technology sector, which will benefit from additional scale and a wider customer base. It will also enable the enlarged company to tender for larger projects and cross-sell products from each group into the other’s markets as well as providing a stronger platform for further international expansion.

The deal was led by Cavendish partner Joe Stelzer and director John Farrugia, with support on Takeover Panel and public company matters by Cavendish partner Jonathan Buxton.

The transaction is the latest in a number of public to private transactions advised on by Cavendish, including the sale of Liberty PLC to Blue Gem Capital Partners and Focus Solutions Group plc to Standard Life plc.

John Farrugia, who led the transaction for Cavendish Corporate Finance, commented:

“Global threats from terrorist and international crime organizations are constantly changing and this deal will help the enlarged group deliver enhanced intelligence solutions for its broad range of clients to address these evolving challenges and assist it in capitalising on the opportunities these trends present. The Group’s products and systems are world-leading and are increasingly being used by defence and law enforcement agencies worldwide for their security and surveillance needs.

Key Contacts

John Farrugia

Partner, Technology

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Jonathan Buxton

Partner & Head of Consumer

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