Saturday highlights: on the resurgence of Center City; Workday CEO: We continue to beat Oracle and SAP

Links 8/26: Here's the tech NBC built to stream the Olympics; Rackspace goes private in $4.3 billion acquisition

Pitchbook: Early investors in recieved 10.7x return

Tom Paine

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Marc Lore

Investors in certainly did well, including Penn-related MentorTech Ventures.

The website Pitchbook reported that investors in Hoboken-based's initial Series A (June 2014) earned a multiple of 10.7x their investment. The largest beneficiary may have been New Enterprise Associates, which led the round. MentorTech Ventures was an investor in the Series A, as it was in a $140 million round in early 2015. Technically Philly had reported that MentorTech had invested $8 million in Jet.çom, forming a special purpose fund to invest beyond its normal limits for one company.

Returns on the February 2015 round slipped to 4.3x, and for the final huge Fidelity-led $350 million round late last year, fell to 2.1x. But if a firm can put its money somewhere for less than a year and get more than twice as much back, its certainly happy.

Walmart agreed to buy e-commerce startup in early August for about $3.3 billion. raised a total of $565 million in venture capital.

MentorTech had previously invested in Quidsi, Marc Lore's earlier startup, that was sold to Amazon for $545 million in 2010.

MentorTech's total return on will depend on how much of the $8 million it invested in the Series A as opposed to the latter round.

Lore, a Bucknell graduate, may be permanently on leave as a student from Wharton. He doesn't need to return.

Links 8/26: Google may cut the size of its Fiber business in half; Uber loses at least $1.2 billion in first half of 2016

Frank Recruitment Group Opens Office in Philadelphia
Global IT recruitment firm to add 250 people to its Philadelphia office

Business Wire
Frank Recruitment Group Opens Office in Philadelphia
Global IT recruitment firm to add 250 people to its Philadelphia office

August 23, 2016 01:20 PM Eastern Daylight Time
LONDON & PHILADELPHIA--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Frank Recruitment Group (“FRG”), a leading global staffing and recruiting firm focused exclusively on the enterprise software market, today announced the opening of its Philadelphia office. The company plans to hire 250 people, most of whom will be recent college graduates interested in becoming recruiters. FRG provides robust training and support that prepares new hires to become specialists who recruit and place technology experts in jobs around the world. In April of this year, FRG was acquired by TPG Growth, the middle market buyout and growth equity platform of leading alternative asset firm TPG.

“As the demand for specialized technology experts grows, an efficient, scalable approach to placing them in jobs has the potential to revolutionize the recruiting industry. We look forward to partnering with the team to continue the company’s growth in Philadelphia and beyond.”
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With 10 offices spanning Europe, Asia, and the Unites States, FRG employs more than 900 individuals globally. FRG’s industry-leading “FRG University” prepares all new hires for the recruiting market, and the company provides ongoing immersive training and mentorship programs to promote career and talent development. This unique training, along with industry-leading compensation, allows FRG to attract and retain talent and position its clients for success.

“Entering a new market and building a team is exciting for us, as at our core, FRG is a people-centric business,” said James Lloyd Townshend, CEO of FRG. “We are focused on enabling our employees, providing them with top-level training, fast-track career progression, and ongoing professional development. We help young graduates take advantage of the significant—and lucrative—opportunities that are available in the tech recruiting industry. We look forward to bringing our specialized model to a new city.”

FRG has flourished as a result of its focus on the fast-growing technology recruitment market. The firm operates six core brands, each focused on recruiting software professionals that specialize in a different technology product. In 2007, the company launched its original brand, Nigel Frank, which recruits professionals who specialize in Microsoft Dynamics. In addition to Nigel Frank, the company has since added:

Mason Frank International, which recruits for Salesforce experts
Churchill Frank, which focuses on experts in big data software
Anderson Frank, which recruits NetSuite software professionals
Pearson Frank, which places talent in Java, Web and PHP jobs
Washington Frank, which specializes in staffing opportunities in emerging cloud technologies
“At TPG Growth, we’re focused on identifying disruptive models that can transform industries,” said Shamik Patel, Principal at TPG Growth. “As the demand for specialized technology experts grows, an efficient, scalable approach to placing them in jobs has the potential to revolutionize the recruiting industry. We look forward to partnering with the team to continue the company’s growth in Philadelphia and beyond.”

TPG Growth’s portfolio includes numerous companies that, like FRG, leverage opportunities for disruption, such as Airbnb, e.l.f. cosmetics, ipsy, Spotify, and Uber.

FRG’s Philadelphia office formally opens September 12, 2016. The office has hired 40 individuals to-date and is currently hosting regular recruitment events for its new office. Upcoming recruitment events will occur on August 31st and September 6th at Ten Penn Center (1801 Market Street Philadelphia, PA). For more information about job opportunities, please contact

About Frank Recruitment Group

Frank Recruitment Group was founded in Newcastle, UK in 2007 and is a leading global niche IT recruitment business that employs more than 900 people across its offices in London, New York, Newcastle, San Francisco, Melbourne and Singapore. The group operates six trading brands; each aligned with a specific technology product. Nigel Frank was established in 2007 and is the global leader in recruiting Microsoft Dynamics professionals. Its second core brand, Mason Frank, was launched in 2010 and is the largest global provider of Salesforce professionals. In 2014, the Company launched two additional brands: Churchill Frank, which focuses on Big Data solutions; and Washington Frank, FRG’s incubator brand, which specializes in staffing opportunities in emerging cloud technologies. In 2016, FRG launched two further brands; Anderson Frank, which specializes in NetSuite staffing and Pearson Frank, which recruits Java and PHP developers. FRG plans to expand its outreach globally and attract more recruiters in strategic hubs to continue to meet demand for the Company’s services. For more information, visit

Erika White, +1 415-743-1550

Links 8/24: Salesforce's next big product to be called 'Einstein'; BAMTech signs deal with ACC Digital Network operator

Doylestown-based clinical trials tech firm Bioclinica is being acquired by buyout firm Cinven Ltd for reported $1.4 billion

Tom Paine

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Doylestown-based Bioclinica is being acquired by buyout firm Cinven Ltd, it was announced yesterday, in a deal reported to be valued at $1.4 billion, including debt. Cinven is acquiring it from two other buyout firms, Water Street Healthcare Partners and JLL Partners.

Reuter first reported Bioclinica's owners were looking for a buyer in May.

Since being taken private in 2013, Bioclinica has made several acquisitions, including its January acquisition of clinical trial payments specialist Clinverse, which was backed by Edison Partners. Bioclinica is reported to have EBITDA (earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization ) in the $100 million range.

Bioclinica was founded in 1990 as Bio-Imaging Technologies and has over 2300 employees, according to its website.

While several firms in the Philly area have one or more of the tools needed for clinical trials, the key to Bioclinica's strategy has been to integrate several of them.

Europe-based Cinven has several other healthcare-related companies in its portfolio.

"This is an excellent opportunity to invest in a leading provider of technology-enabled services to the clinical trial industry with a collection of high growth businesses across the globe," said Alex Leslie, Partner at Cinven, in a statement. John Hubbard will continue as Bioclinica's CEO.

JLL Partners took Bioclinica private in 2013 for $113 million, but not all the difference between that and the reported sale
price is pure profit. One must account for the dollars or equity spent on nine mergers and acquisitions since 2013.

Links 8/23: Bethlehem's OraSure gets Zika funding; Bruce McClelland Named CEO of Arris

As Qlik's purchase is consummated, Tableau names AWS vet as new CEO

Tom Paine

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Done Deal.

That was the word today, as Thoma Bravo announced it had completed its $3 billion buyout of business intelligence vendor Qlik.

The private equity deal, reached in early June, was approved by Qlik shareholders last week. Shares of Qlik common stock were removed from listing on The NASDAQ Stock Market, with trading in Qlik shares suspended prior to the opening of business today.

Although the Philly area loses a major, publicly traded tech firm, at least Qlik remains based in Radnor. Although nothing is immutable; there is always a chance that the company, which has about 10% of approximately 2500 employees based out of Radnor, might be subject to some future combination with a company based elsewhere, and headquarters is usually the first to go in such situations.

In its last earnings report as a public company in July, Qlik reported revenue of $180.6 million and a net GAAP loss of 7 cents per share.

Though Thoma Bravo has no particular tie to the Philadelphia area that I know of, it now has four portfolio companies here. The other three are Elemica (Wayne), iPipeline (Exton), and Sparta Systems (Hamilton, NJ).

Ironically, the closest to being Qlik's arch rival, Seattle-based Tableau, today announced that Amazon Web Services veteran Adam Selipsky will become Tableau’s new CEO, replacing co-founder Christian Chabot, who will remain as chairman. That Selipsky comes from AWS may be an indictor of a greater emphasis on Tableau's cloud offering in the future.

Tableau, which had been on a torrid growth pace, lost almost 50% of its value on one day in February of this year after a missed forecast and hasn't really recovered since. In its most recent quarter Tableau reported a net GAAP loss of $47.5 million on revenue
of $198.5 million.

Links 8/22: Comcast's NBCUniversal completes purchase of DreamWorks Animation; Rovi to close on TiVo September 7

Does SAP still love Delco? Yes, says SAP North America President Jennifer Morgan

Tom Paine

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Downtown Newtown Square

Update 8/21: In a letter to the Delco Times, SAP North America President Jennifer Morgan reaffirmed SAP's commitment to keeping its NA headquarters in Newtown Square.

"Delaware County and the greater Philadelphia area is our home and it will continue to be the home of SAP in North America even as we continue to grow, expand, and refine our real estate footprint across the U.S. and Canada," she wrote.

Don't know what to make of a SAP America SVP dissing Delco.

In an article in the Daily Local News, Brian Reaves, senior vice president and head of diversity and inclusion at SAP, seemed to suggest that SAP America's east coast center of gravity would shift from Newtown Square (Delaware County PA) to New York City, where the company is opening spanking new offices at Hudson Yards. He found about three different ways to say Delco wasn't cool enough to attract millenial workers.

One minor quibble: neither the original Daily Local article or the followup article identified the context in which Reaves remarks were made; the occasion, the reason for the remarks, etc.

“Quite honestly, kind of like what’s happening in Germany right now, although we’re in Waldorf, Germany, where we’ve now opened up Berlin, people start to see the major cities as - I think in people’s minds regardless of what the physical paper looks like, I would think they’ll start to brand us more tied to New York City. So, it’s pretty exciting, pretty exciting coming up.”

Reaves said that while Newtown Square would remain North American headquarters from a "legal perspective," in substance New York City would be.

Newtown Square, where around the corner from SAP the Foxcatcher tragedy took place (before SAP arrived). Which once hosted a PGA Championship at Aronimink, only to lose its last  opportunity to host a major due to lack of minority membership. Where I used to stare at cornfields from my office on the other side of Route 3.

But those things are in the past. SAP moved to Newtown Square from a location near the airport around 2000. Its changed, and even has some chain restaurants and a Whole Foods. And people outnumber horses. On the whole a nice place and a trendy and wealthy zip, but it doesn't offer much housing for young people and its true to say its a far cry from NYC.

The sense I get from the article is that Reaves was out of line, and SAP communications people pushed back against his comments, restating SAP's commitment to keeping North American headquarters in Newtown Square, which SAP says now houses 2800 employees. But no doubt there was a grain of truth in Reaves' comments.