Aureos sells Sri Lankan IT company stake

Aureos Capital has sold its minority stake in MillenniumIT, which has been acquired by the London Stock Exchange Group for $30m.

Emerging markets specialist Aureos Capital has sold its 13 percent stake in MillenniumIT, a Sri Lankan trading software company, to the London Stock Echange Group, 13 years after its initial investment.

London Stock Exchange has acquired the company for $30 million.

Aureos invested in MillenniumIT in 1996 through the funding of its management buyout of the open systems division of ComputerLand Sri Lanka, the firm said in a statement. The deal was led by Sev Vettivetpillai, who is now chief executive of Aureos.

Over the course of the investment, Aureos invested a little more than $1.1 million in the business. The investment was part of a legacy portfolio – formerly invested and managed by British development organisation CDC Group – that was subsequently taken over by Aureos in 2001.

London Stock Exchange’s backing will help the company expand its global franchise and will help raise the profile of Sri Lanka’s software sector amongst global investors, Vettivetpillai said in a statement.
MillenniumIT provides technology solutions to the global capital markets industry. Its products are used by depositories, exchanges, brokerages and regulatory bodies in the US, Europe, Africa and Asia Pacific.

Aureos is one of the few and earliest private equity investors in Sri Lanka. It has made investments in companies such as Dipped Products, Aqua Packaging and Duth Lanka Trailers. In August 2008, the firm acquired a 25 percent stake in Sunshine Group for $4.75 million. At the same time, the firm also acquired a 5 percent stake in one of the group’s unit businesses, Watawala Plantations, for $900,000. Those investments were made from Aureos Capital’s $122 million South Asia Fund.

In South Asia, the firm targets investments in sectors such as information technology, pharmaceuticals, healthcare, manufacturing and infrastructure.

In all, Aureos manages more than $1.2 billion across 15 funds focused on Asia, Africa and Latin America. Of the 137 legacy portfolio companies taken on by Aureos, 133 have now been exited.