Private equity, Mergers and Acquisitions, Mergers and Acquisitions, Content, Sales and marketing

Vista Equity Acquires Customer Success SaaS Software Provider Gainsight


Private equity firm Vista Equity Partners has acquired majority control of Gainsight, a customer success software company that has been venture-backed since 2013. Financial terms of the deal were not officially disclosed but the valuation was $1.1 billion, according to The Wall Street Journal.

This is M&A deal number 495 that ChannelE2E has tracked so far in 2020. Find a full list of M&A deals here.

Gainsight, formerly known as JBara Software, was one of the first software companies to help customers build and scale recurring revenue businesses. Gainsight software helps businesses prevent churn by identifying and more deeply engaging at-risk customers. The company’s Customer Cloud offers solutions focused on customer success, product experience, revenue optimization, and customer data. Key adopters include GE Digital, SAP Concur and Box, Gainsight says.

Vista Equity Partners is a familiar name within and across the IT channel. The private equity firm also owns stakes in DattoInfobloxJamf, and LogicMonitor, among many others.

Gainsight Partner Strategy, Business History

Gainsight's partner community includes technology businesses and service providers that "help customers
deliver the outcomes and experiences that drive customer success," the firm says. Gainsight also runs the Pulse Community, which spans 5,000+ members focused on the Customer Success profession.

Gainsight in 2017 raised $52 million Series E round led by Lightspeed Venture Partners. Battery Ventures, Bain Capital Ventures, Bessemer Venture Partners, Summit Partners, Salesforce Ventures, Insight Venture Partners, and Cisco Investments also participated in that round. At the time, revenues were growing more than 160 percent per year, and key customers included Gigamon, Secureworks, and VMware.

This is the second major M&A deal involving a customer success software business to surface this week. The other deal involved Facebook acquiring customer service CRM startup Kustomer for an estimated $1 billion.

Vista Equity Partners Acquires Gainsight: Executive Perspectives

In a prepared statement about the deal, Nick Mehta, CEO of Gainsight, said:

“We learned about Vista because many of their portfolio companies are Gainsight customers and we saw how they partner with leading enterprise software businesses to accelerate success. Reaching unicorn status and working with Vista is validation of how far the Customer Success community has come over the last seven years and how important our work is to the growth and financial strength of some of the world’s leading businesses. I couldn’t be more excited to partner with the Vista team to drive more innovation, more impact and continued success for the community as a whole.”

Added Monti Saroya, co-head of the Vista Flagship Fund and senior managing director:

“As an enabler of both customer and business success, we see tremendous opportunity for Gainsight to further expand its footprint and customer base. We are excited to partner with the Gainsight team in its next phase of growth, helping the company to expand the category it has created and deliver even more solutions that drive retention and growth to businesses across the globe.”

Concluded John Stalder, managing director at Vista Equity Partners:

“Across our portfolio of over 65 software companies, Vista has witnessed firsthand the outsized impact that a commitment to customer success can have on a company’s performance. Together with Nick and the excellent leadership team at Gainsight, we look forward to accelerating the adoption of Gainsight products and business models that prioritize customer experience and satisfaction.”

Qatalyst Partners served as financial advisor and Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati acted as legal counsel to Gainsight. Kirkland & Ellis LLP served as legal counsel to Vista.

Joe Panettieri

Joe Panettieri is co-founder & editorial director of MSSP Alert and ChannelE2E, the two leading news & analysis sites for managed service providers in the cybersecurity market.