M&A: Cloud Hosting Provider Acquired at 6X Revenue Valuation

M&A: Cloud Hosting Provider Acquired at 6X Revenue Valuation

Hosted Solutions, a data center operator that generates roughly $51.7 million in annual revenues, has been acquired for roughly $310 million in cash. Translation: Windstream Corp., the buyer, is paying roughly six times revenues to acquire Hosted Solutions, which is based in Raleigh, N.C. Here are the details.

First, thanks to Alpheon President and CEO Greg Donovan for pointing out the Windstream-Hosted Solutions deal. Triangle Business Journal -- a newspaper in Research Triangle Park, N.C. -- has takes a look at the Hosted Solutions-Windstream combo in this news story. Some quick takeaways from the piece:

  • Hosted Solutions was basically an $800,000 company that was salvaged from bankruptcy a decade ago.
  • Windstream Corp. is acquiring Hosted Solutions from a private equity firm called ABRY Partners.
  • Windstream said the acquisition will boost its own data center business, giving the company a total of 12 data centers across the country.
  • ABRY paid $144 million for Hosted Solutions in 2008...  more than doubling its investment in 31 months.
  • Hosted Solutions generated $51.7 million in revenue in the 12 months ended Sept. 30, The company has about 125 employees.
On the one hand, hosting firms are not the same as MSPs. On the other hand they are close cousins -- specializing in recurring revenues and a growing mix of hosted or managed services. But here's the rub: Hosted Solutions was valued at roughly six times annual revenues, while most MSP acquisitions seem to involve valuations at 0.5 to 1.5 times annual recurring revenues.

No doubt, MSP valuations continue to vary greatly. But industry consolidation continues. In addition to the Windsteam-Hosted Solutions combo, this week's other key M&A deal involved PlumChoice acquiring Everon Technology Services.

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