Capita targets Irish outsourcing market with £28m SouthWestern buy

Capita has acquired Irish business process outsourcing firm SouthWestern for £28 million.

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Capita has acquired business process outsourcing firm SouthWestern for £28 million, expanding its presence in the Irish services market.

The Cork-based company provides customer relationship management, financial shared services, data processing and inspectorate services to private and public sector organisations.

It employs around 1,000 employees, primarily based across three sites in Cork, and one in Lodz, Poland, together with smaller operations in Dublin and Milton Keynes. It was acquired from private equity group Ion Equity on a cash free, debt free basis.

Capita expects that SouthWestern will generate an operating profit of around €7m (£5.6m) on revenues of €47m (£37.6m) in 2016, following IT systems enhancement next year. 

SouthWestern customers include the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Bord Gáis, the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, Bord Bia, Eircom and Failte Ireland.

“This deal will significantly enhance Capita's presence in the Irish business process outsourcing market, which is estimated to be worth €1bn and growing by 5 per cent each year,” said Capita chief executive Andy Parker, adding that the firm already has around 1,000 staff in the country.

The acquisition follows a string of recent buys by Capita during 2014. This includes resource planning, scheduling and management software provider Retain International, specialist security reseller Network Technology Solutions, mobile and smart device software house AMT for £82 million, and networking and connectivity services provider Updata for £80 million.

In July, Capita expanded its presence in Germany, acquiring specialist customer management company tricontes for an undisclosed sum.

Last year the company spent a total of £271 million on 13 acquisitions under former chief executive Paul Pindar.

TechMarketView principal analyst, Michael Larner, commented: “Capita has a wealth of experience in on-boarding acquisitions and will look to cross fertilise expertise and capabilities from the wider group in order for SouthWestern to achieve its ambitious growth targets.” 

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