Vendman Systems sold for up to £4.25m

Vendman, a retail software developer based in Hazel Grove, Stockport, has been bought by Vianet Group Plc for up to £4.25m.

Vianet, which uses devices connected to its Internet of Things platform to provide data and business insight, will make an initial cash payment of £2m, with an earn-out element of up to £2.25m based on the achievement of EBIT targets in the first two years.

Vendman’s software products include stock control, pricing information, data management, account analysis and route planning and it provides management services for more than 200,000 machines in the UK and European unattended retail markets.

It had a turnover of £1.8m for the year to the end of March 2017, with over 90% recurring revenue, and an operating profit of £270,000 with net assets of £280,000.

Vianet, which is based in Stockton-on-Tees, said the acquisition was “highly complementary” to its existing business – Vendman has already partnered with Vianet’s Smart Machines division, with Vianet’s IOT connectivity and contactless payment being used by Vendman customers.

Stewart Darling, chief executive of Vianet Group, said: “I believe the combination of Vendman ERP and mobile software products with Vianet IOT connectivity, data analytics and contactless payment solutions creates an unparalleled portfolio with strong presence in the UK and Europe.

“This is positive news for both sets of customers as we continue to extend our capability, delivering increased value to the unattended retail sector, and in doing so accelerating our pan European growth plans. ”

A team from Gordons’ corporate department comprising Peter Barton, Jonathan Asquez and Amy Pierechod, worked on the deal together with Grant Thornton, which provided financial and tax due diligence advice, led by partner Dan Rosinke and associate director Jonathan Lister. Vianet was provided corporate finance advice by Stuart Moss of Manchester-based Rickett Mitchell. Paul Lupton from Gorvins Solicitors acted for Vendman during the sale, assisted by Rowan Uren (corporate), Gemma Lingard (corporate) and Claire Beaumont (commercial property).