Partners Group backs Aussie risk business

The Switzerland-headquartered private markets firm has provided A$160m in debt to support the take-private of SAI Global.

Global private markets investor Partners Group has committed AS$160 million (€111 million; $115 million) as the sole second lien debt provider in the public-to-private acquisition of Australian risk management services company SAI Global.

SAI Global, which was listed on the Australian Stock Exchange, has been taken private by investment funds advised by Baring Private Equity Asia in a deal valuing the firm at A$1.3 billion.

SAI is a global provider of risk management products and services which help organisations manage risk and uncertainty. It provides training, certification and auditing in relation to international standards such as ISO 9001; provides specialist information on standards and technical information; and supplies software and services for managing and monitoring risk and compliance.

The firm is also Australia’s largest provider of property information and settlement services to the legal, financial and conveyancing sectors. Headquartered in Sydney, it employs more than 2,000 staff in 29 countries across Australia, Europe, North America and Asia.

Edward Tong, senior vice president and head of private debt Asia Pacific at Partners Group, said SAI “has established leading market positions across its business segments and now has a great opportunity to further its global expansion under new ownership”.

Scott Essex, partner and co-head of private debt at Partners Group, added that the firm had identified subordinated debt as “an attractive investment opportunity in the broader Asia Pacific region” as the regional banks – while being active lenders – are not typically long-term holders of junior debt.

SIX Swiss Exchange-listed Partners Group manages over €49 billion in investment programmes focused on private equity, private real estate, private infrastructure and private debt.