A $500 million fund started last fall to roll up financial technology businesses has made its first acquisition, a risk and compliance software firm that serves banks.
Opus Global said Tuesday that it has acquired Hiperos, a third-party management company based in Branchburg, N.J. Hiperos helps companies oversee various third parties and monitors information management, risk-taking, compliance and performance. Its clients include Bank of Montreal (BMO), Huntington Bancshares (HBAN), PNC Financial Services Group (PNC), State Street (STT) and Toronto-Dominion Bank (TD), as well as a broad swath of nonfinancial firms, the company says.
The price of the deal was not disclosed. Opus is backed by $450 million from Chicago private-equity firm GTCR and $50 million from former Verifone Chief Executive Doug Bergeron. Hiperos addresses two colliding forces: a continued trend toward use of vendors, and a heightened regulatory environment, Bergeron says.
"Over the last 20 years, and it is accelerating, companies have decided to focus only on doing what they are uniquely good at and then going with third parties for everything else," Bergeron said in an interview. "But we are also in the era of Big Brother, where regulators in every industry, acutely with financial institutions, have hundreds of new regulations."
Bergeron added that the new regulations extend to business partners.
Regulators have "said it is your business to use third parties, but if there is a problem you have to own it," Bergeron says.
Hiperos currently has helped its clients manage 300,000 third-party relationships, according to the companies. The acquisition by Opus will give it the capital to expand.
Bergeron says he established Opus with a broad focus initially. At the time, he mentioned risk and compliance as an area of potential interest, but also discussed acquiring payments and other financial technology firms. With its first acquisition in place, Bergeron says additional acquisitions will have a risk and compliance focus.
"We were very ambitious at first because we didn't know what kinds of fish we'd find," Bergeron says. "We've found our prince, and we are going to build around that now."