Market Pivot Results in Global Growth; Wins International Deal of the Year


Key Facts

  • Year of Investment: 2018
  •  Status: Exited
  • Significant Market Pivot
  • Investment in R&D
  • Global Expansion
  • Thematic Investing

Thematic investing, a long-term relationship & Mother Nature are backdrops to 2021 International deal of the year

Transaction Highlights

Through a thesis-driven approach and a patient relationship building effort, AKKR identified Christchurch, NZ-based Seequent in 2014 as a unique business led by a strong management team with strong growth potential. The successful partnership culminated in a billion-dollar exit and named Buyouts‘ 2021 International Deal of the Year.


By increasing scale, accelerating geographic expansion, broadening the product portfolio, and diversifying end market focus, Seequent quickly developed a clear market leadership globally. The company attracted a significant amount of buyer interest. Seequent was ultimately acquired in 2021 by Bentley Systems (NASDAQ: BSY) for USD$1.05 billion.

The AKKR Seequent investment was named Buyouts’ International Deal of the Year in April 2022.

Shaun Maloney,
Former CEO of Seequent

“We were at a point of exploring how to expand on the opportunity we created. We took a full year to find the right partner to take us forward and AKKR came up on top. And when we were ready to move, they acted with speed and focus that allowed Seequent to grow by leaps and bounds.”

Business Overview

Seequent provides geoscience analysis, modelling and collaborative technologies for understanding geoscience and engineering design solutions. The original technology was used to produce 3D medical imaging of the human body, but that rapidly evolved to model the subsurface of the earth following the 2011 Christchurch earthquake. The natural disaster exposed the need to help private companies and public agencies analyze complex data, manage risk and ultimately make better decisions about earth, environment and energy challenges.

What started out as introductory conversations in 2014 formed the basis for a long-term relationship between Seequent management and Accel-KKR. Informal dialog over several years revealed a shared vision of growth and complementary values between the two parties, and ultimately led to the opportunity for AKKR to become the majority investor in Seequent. The investment, made in 2018, earned Accel-KKR the recognition of “Investor of the Year” by the American Chamber of Commerce in New Zealand.

Value Creation

Between 2018 and 2021, AKKR worked closely with Seequent on a range of initiatives, including:

    • Diversifying Seequent’s industry concentration from metals & mining into the environmental, civil engineering and energy end markets
    • Expanding Seequent’s customer markets and employee base into global locations through two add-on acquisitions in North America. The acquisitions also added new solutions to Seequent’s product suite
    • Increasing the company’s R&D investment  by 2.4x
    • Complementing a very strong CEO with key executive appointments to manage an increasingly complex and global business

These initiatives contributed to a 4x revenue expansion and >10x EBITDA expansion during the investment period.

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