Blackstone buys stake in TaskUs said to be worth $250m, Philippine PE Navegar exits

TaskUs

Manila-based Navegar Partners has exited its investment in TaskUs, a startup that handles back-office support for tech companies, as part of a stake sale to Blackstone that values the outsourcer at more than $500 million (pre-money).

A Bloomberg report said Blackstone had invested $250 million in the startup, quoting people familiar with the matter.

“The growth in ride-sharing, social media, online food delivery, e-commerce and autonomous driving is creating an enormous need for enabling business services,” said Blackstone senior managing director Amit Dixit in a statement.

“With access to capital from Blackstone, as well our two decades of experience with BPO companies, we are confident that our investment in TaskUs can significantly accelerate the company’s growth trajectory,” he added.

The transaction is expected to close in the fourth quarter of 2018, subject to regulatory approvals and customary closing conditions.

Private equity firm Navegar is managed by Nori Poblador and Javier Infante in partnership with Brummer & Partners, a leading European alternative asset manager.

TaskUs had raised $15 million from Navegar in 2015 and $14 million in debt from Bridge Bank in 2016. Led by co-founders Bryce Maddock and Jaspar Weir, who will stay on as CEO and president after the stake sale to Blackstone, the startup provides customer services and content moderation to companies such as Uber, Groupon, Tinder and Gusto.

Headquartered in California, a majority of its 11,000 employees are based in the Philippines.

The stake disposal to Blackstone could help TaskUs dramatically increase its investment in consulting, technology and innovation, said Maddock.

“We will also use this investment to scale globally with new investments in Europe, India and Latin America and continued expansion in the countries where we operate today – the United States, the Philippines, Mexico and Taiwan,” he added.

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