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Carlyle to buy Switzerland’s AutoForm Engineering in $2 billion deal

U.S. private-equity firm Carlyle Group Inc. Wednesday struck a $2 billion deal to acquire AutoForm Engineering GmbH, a Switzerland-based industrial software provider.

Carlyle is acquiring the business from smaller European buyout rival Astorg. The deal value wasn’t announced. According to people familiar with the matter, the transaction was priced at €1.75 billion, equivalent to nearly $2 billion.

The Wall Street Journal earlier reported a deal was close.

AutoForm’s software is used to engineer and evaluate sheet-metal parts, simulate the process of joining a car’s frame and decide the best way of making tubular parts, according to its website. Customers can access the technology in the cloud, allowing them to cut costs by only paying for the software when it is tapped.

Over 1,000 manufacturers and suppliers use AutoForm’s technology including Volkswagen AG, General Motors Co. and Tesla Inc., according to the company’s website.

Car makers use high-end software tools such as AutoForm’sto make designs that cut carbon dioxide emissions, improve fuel efficiency and make better use of materials for vehicle assembly. Carlyle and other private-equity firms have been big investors in software for years, as it pervades business and consumer interaction and increasingly is sold in ways that generate recurring and growing revenue.

Earlier this month, Carlyle acquired a majority stake in CSS AG, a Germany-based provider of software used by companies to manage their accounting, controlling and human resources functions.

Carlyle oversees a total of $293 billion in assets across sectors. In technology, the Washington, D.C.-based buyout firm has made more than 270 transactions and deployed more than $31 billion of capital.

Astorg is headquartered in Paris and acquired AutoForm in 2016 for an undisclosed amount. The buyout firm oversees 13 billion euros in assets and has made investments across a range of sectors, including software, manufacturing, aerospace and media and telecommunications.

Evercore Inc. and Jefferies Financial Group Inc. were financial advisers to Astorg, while Paul Hastings LLP provided legal advice. Rothschild & Co. was the financial adviser to Carlyle. Linklaters LLP, Lenz & Staehelin and Latham & Watkins LLP were legal advisers.

 

This story has been published from a wire agency feed without modifications to the text

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