PROVO, Utah and MENLO PARK, California – April 1, 2016
Ancestry.com LLC, the leading provider of online family history data and personal DNA testing, today announced that Silver Lake and GIC, a current investor in Ancestry, have signed a definitive agreement to acquire substantial equity stakes in the company from existing equity holders at an enterprise value of approximately $2.6 billion. Following the transaction, Silver Lake and GIC will hold equal minority ownership positions in Ancestry, while other current investors – the Permira funds, Spectrum Equity and Ancestry management, including President and Chief Executive Officer Tim Sullivan and Chief Financial and Chief Operating Officer Howard Hochhauser – will remain as meaningful equity investors in the company and, along with GIC, will continue to own a majority of the company.
Ancestry, a global leader in family history and consumer genomics, has more than 2.2 million paying subscribers across its core Ancestry internet properties. The company harnesses the information found in its 17 billion digitized historical records, subscribers’ 78 million family trees, and 1.5 million DNA samples to help people gain insight into their heritage.
“Silver Lake’s and GIC’s investments constitute a vote of confidence in our future, an affirmation of the work we have done to build our company and, most importantly, a validation of the tremendous opportunities we see ahead,” said Tim Sullivan, President and Chief Executive Officer of Ancestry. “Silver Lake’s track record for successful technology investing at scale, coupled with its exceptional operational expertise, fits closely with our vision for accelerating growth across our entire business as we help people around the world learn more about who they are and where they come from. GIC, the Permira funds, and Spectrum Equity have been tremendous partners to Ancestry over the years, and we look forward to further deepening our relationship with these institutions as we continue to build out our business globally.”
“Ancestry’s world-class management team has built a market-leading platform that continues to define and pioneer the market for self-discovery. We believe Ancestry’s subscription businesses are well positioned to deliver further attractive and profitable growth,” said Mike Bingle, Managing Partner at Silver Lake. “Ancestry’s rapidly expanding and market leading consumer DNA testing service has powerful network effects and widespread consumer appeal. Ancestry has an exciting future, and we look forward to working alongside management as the company executes on its next phase of development,” said Stephen Evans, Managing Director at Silver Lake.
“GIC has enjoyed working with Tim, Howard, and the entire Ancestry management team over the past three years, and we look forward to helping them build on Ancestry’s best-in-class, global business over the long term,” said Eric Wilmes, Managing Director at GIC. “We have a long history of working closely with both Silver Lake and Permira, and we welcome this opportunity to partner with both firms to support Ancestry’s growth and create value together,” added Alex Moskowitz, Senior Vice President at GIC.
Brian Ruder, a Permira Partner and Co-Head of the firm’s Technology Sector Team, said, “In addition to realizing significant revenue and earnings growth over the last few years, the Ancestry team has continued to strengthen its core online genealogy products while dramatically developing the emerging DNA business – paving the way for a bright future for the company. Our partnership with Ancestry represents another example of the Permira funds leveraging our expertise and global footprint to foster growth and partnering with management to create significant value. Ancestry has many exciting opportunities ahead and we are thrilled to remain a significant investor.”
The transaction is subject to customary regulatory approvals and is expected to close in the second calendar quarter of 2016. Subsequent to closing, pre-transaction investors in Ancestry will own a majority of the voting capital stock of the company and will designate the majority of the company’s board of directors.