Aussie Payroll Firm Lands $76M Ahead Of IPO

22. December 2017.

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Private equity investment manager HarbourVest Partners has provided Australian payroll company Ascender with $76.6 million in equity ahead of its initial public offering (IPO) on the Australian Securities Exchange (ASX).

Reports in the Australian Financial Review on Wednesday (Dec. 20) said Ascender landed the investment through Gledswood Hills, New South Wales-based mortgage company Potentia Capital, which owns a majority stake in the payroll company. Ascender is planning to float on the ASX next year.

Ascender is Australia and New Zealand’s largest payroll software company, and now reportedly has a market value exceeding $191 million. A float on the ASX would see fund managers comparing the company to payroll and human resource technology provider Paycom Software, based in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, and cloud-based payroll and human capital management software solutions provider Paylocity, based out of Chicago, Illinois.

According to reports, Ascender will be looking toward outsourcing some of its non-core functions to heighten its return on investment and free up capital. The move would be part of a broader outsourcing trend occurring not only in the payroll industry, but across multiple other verticals as well.

Earlier this month, the ASX announced plans to become the first global stock exchange in the world to deploy distributed ledger technology. The exchange aims to use the technology to facilitate clearing and settlement of trades. Interestingly, while the move has many assuming Australia’s support of blockchain, the ASX never explicitly used the word “blockchain” in its announcement, reports in Forbes noted at the time.

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