• February 13, 2011
  • Europe, North America

H.I.G. Europe Acquires AIRCOM International

LONDON – February 13, 2011 – H.I.G. Europe, the European arm of global private equity investment firm H.I.G. Capital, today announces that funds advised by H.I.G. European Capital Partners LLP have acquired AIRCOM International Group from Advent International. AIRCOM is the world’s largest independent provider of network planning and optimisation services to the mobile telecoms industry. AIRCOM estimates that every day, the 20 top global operators depend upon its tools and consultants to improve network coverage and service quality for more than 1.1 billion subscribers worldwide.

Founded in 1995, AIRCOM is headquartered in the UK, and employs over 900 professionals spread across 14 offices worldwide servicing customers in 135 countries. Today’s mobile market is undergoing a dramatic transformation, driven by the growth in data-hungry devices such as smart-phones and iPads, which consume vastly more bandwidth. AIRCOM’s business is built around helping the mobile industry to cope with these data challenges. It partners with market leading companies including Hewlett Packard and Nokia Siemens as well as working directly with blue chip telecom operators such as Vodafone and O2. It is forecast to deliver over £90m in revenues in its current financial year to June 2011.

Paul Canning, Managing Director, H.I.G. Europe, said: “AIRCOM is already a leader in its market, and has ambitious plans to grow and provide a real end-to-end suite of solutions for the mobile telecoms industry. We look forward to supporting the management and we believe that we can bring added firepower and support for their ambitious growth plans.”

Under the leadership of Chief Executive Darryl Edwards, who joined the business in October 2009, the company has taken advantage of the rapid growth in mobile traffic. Edwards said: “AIRCOM is incredibly well-placed to grow with our clients – more and more of whom are turning to us to help them get the most out of their networks. With H.I.G.’s support, we can ensure our products and services remain at the cutting edge of the industry.”

Barclays and HSBC have provided a joint debt package to support the Group going forward.

The AIRCOM investment marks H.I.G. Europe’s eighth new deal investment in the last 12 months. With a full pipeline of activity, H.I.G. expects to make further deal announcements in the coming months.

AIRCOM is an independent provider of network management tools and services. Our I-View framework allows mobile network operators to rapidly, efficiently and seamlessly plan, manage, configure and optimise their networks. I-View enables operators to regain visibility and control of their entire network, enabling radical shifts in business dynamics to become more efficient, more agile and more profitable.

The market leader in the provision and deployment of network engineering tools, AIRCOM products are in use across 135+ countries by over half the world’s mobile operators. Every day, the 20 top global operators depend upon AIRCOM’s tools and consultants to improve network coverage, and quality for more than 1.1 billion subscribers worldwide. Established for 15 years, we have built our reputation on creating and releasing additional value from within cellular networks.

Headquartered in the UK with offices in 14 countries, we provide global and regional viewpoints and resource, as well as ensuring that our operator customers benefit from our global knowledge. By looking ahead of the market and sharing intelligence, we develop the skills and tools that network operators need to remain competitive, whatever the economic climate.

With over four million hours working on 3G and 4G networks, our expertise translates into direct and measurable cost savings for mobile operators. From initial consultancy through project implementation, using our staff, training yours, or sourcing expertise for you to take in-house, we are dedicated to maximising the performance of your network, and therefore your business.

About H.I.G. Capital
H.I.G. Capital is a leading global private equity investment firm with more than GBP 6 billion of equity capital under management. Based in Miami, and with offices in Atlanta, Boston, New York, and San Francisco in the U.S., as well as affiliate offices in London, Hamburg and Paris in Europe, H.I.G. specialises in providing capital to small and medium-sized companies with attractive growth potential. H.I.G. invests in management-led buyouts and recapitalisations of profitable and well managed manufacturing or service businesses. H.I.G. also has extensive experience with financial restructurings and operational turnarounds. Since its founding in 1993, H.I.G. invested in and managed more than 200 companies worldwide. The firm’s current portfolio includes more than 50 companies with combined revenues in excess of GBP 5 billion. For more information, please refer to the H.I.G. website at www.hig.com.

Paul Canning
Managing Director

H.I.G. European Capital Partners LLP
25 St. George Street
London W1S 1FS
T +44 (0) 207 318 5700
F +44 (0) 207 318 5749