Baring Private Equity has made a U-turn on plans to sell its stake in technology vendor Infrasoft Technologies after failing to find a buyer, it is understood.

The firm, which has held a majority stake in the Mumbai-based vendor since a 2007 purchase worth $14.7 million, is understood to have decided to improve Infrasoft’s business model instead.

According to The Financial Express, the Indian division of Baring Private Equity had reached out to other equity firms, as well as some software companies, to find a buyer for its approximate 58% stake in the vendor.

It has failed to find a buyer so far due to its valuation of almost five times the initial investment.

While Baring continues its search, however, it’s is set to be involved in the day-to-day running of Infrasoft due to the departure of the vendor’s MD and founder, Hanuman Tripathi, in December. Tripathi sold his 7% stake in the company to Baring.

Sources close the matter told The Financial Express that the vision and expectations of Tripathi and Baring didn’t match. The latter was brought on board as an investor to assist Infrasoft with international expansion and provide access to the PR firm’s portfolio of companies, but no major international deals came about.

While Infrasoft has a number of banking software clients in the domestic market it has historically struggled to grow a substantial foothold abroad.

The firm gained its first customer in the Mauritius in the form of Mauritius Housing Company. The deal was won against a number of mainstream providers, including compatriot vendors Infosys and Intellect Design Arena (formerly Polaris). Mauritius Housing Company signed to install Infrasoft’s flagship core banking software offering, OmniEnterprise.

Infrasoft has also sought to capitalise on the rise of contactless payments by launching a system named ‘QRyres’ which utilises QR codes and NFC to enable digital transactions.

By Alex Hamilton

by IBS Intelligence
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