Morningstar Acquires Remaining Stake in PitchBook

Deborah Cohen | October 14, 2016  |  Middle Market Growth

PitchBook to Continue to be Led by Founder John Gabbert

Longtime ACG Global partner PitchBook announced on Friday that investment research firm Morningstar would pay about $180 million to acquire the remaining 80 percent of the company it didn’t already own.

The transaction will value the Seattle-based provider of M&A data at $225 million, PitchBook said in a statement announcing the deal. It allows Chicago-based Morningstar—which has historically focused on public companies—to apply its core data and software capabilities to private and institutional investors.

“Data has always been Morningstar’s sweet spot, and we look forward to working with PitchBook to help investors and advisors better understand and navigate this evolving area of the market,” Morningstar President and incoming CEO Kunal Kapoor said in a statement.

PitchBook Founder and CEO John Gabbert (pictured above), who began the business in 2007 at the height of the Great Recession, will continue to run the company, which now serves some 1,800 customers seeking data on private equity, venture capital and other M&A deals. PitchBook had $31.1 million in revenue for the trailing 12 months ended June 30 and more than 300 employees.

“Joining forces with Morningstar will help us enter into our next stage of growth, including developing the next-generation version of our award-winning data and software platform, investing in our world-class sales and customer support functions, and expanding our business in Europe and Asia,” Gabbert said in a statement.

PitchBook’s said its strong growth is reflected in sales bookings that have grown by a compound annual rate of more than 70 percent for the five years ended Dec. 31, 2015.

ACG, for its part, will continue its close ties with PitchBook, which is a sponsor and partner at InterGrowth, EuroGrowth and a multitude of ACG chapter events.

In a blog post speaking about the deal on Friday, Gabbert said: “PitchBook is all about the people – and this team is the biggest reason why we are successful. We call ourselves PitchBook Panthers…because we relentlessly pursue our work like a panther does, and I think we’ve done just that. I’m proud to be a Panther.”

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