Thoma Bravo Agrees to Buy RealPage for $9.6 Billion

Private-equity firm Thoma Bravo LP has struck a deal to buy property-management-software provider

RealPage Inc.

RP -0.92%

for $9.6 billion, in one of the largest recent leveraged buyouts.

Thoma Bravo is paying $88.75 per share for the company, a 31% premium to RealPage’s closing price Friday of $67.83, officials at the firms said.

RealPage, based in Richardson, Texas, provides a technology platform used by owners and managers of rental properties. Tenants might pay their rent or submit a maintenance request using RealPage’s software. The company also keeps a database of real-time lease transactions, allowing it to forecast where markets are heading.

Its shares are up 26% this year.

“We were able to do quite well during the pandemic because there was a rush by our industry to go virtual, and we were one of the platforms that did that,” RealPage Chief Executive

Steve Winn

said in an interview.

Mr. Winn previously ran Computer Language Research Inc., a maker of tax software, which he sold to what is now

Thomson Reuters Corp.

in 1998. He bought back a unit of the company that focused on real-estate software and built it into what is now RealPage. The company has grown both organically and through a flurry of acquisitions, completing 12 deals in the past three years.

Software has been among the most resilient sectors during the Covid-19 pandemic as businesses demonstrate that they will keep paying for it even as they cut other costs. That has allowed Thoma Bravo, a technology specialist, to be among the year’s most active private-equity deal makers. RealPage would be its biggest acquisition to date.

The price tag makes it a relatively rare leveraged buyout nearly reaching into the double-digit billions of dollars. While such deals were commonplace before the 2008-09 financial crisis, they have become rarer, with buyout firms more cautious even as they sit on a mountain of unspent cash.

Thoma Bravo, based in San Francisco and Chicago and led by managing partner

Orlando Bravo,

manages more than $70 billion in assets. That includes $22.8 billion it finished raising in October for three separate vehicles.

The private-equity firm sold Ellie Mae Inc. in September to New York Stock Exchange owner

Intercontinental Exchange Inc.

Thoma Bravo, which bought the mortgage-software firm for $3.75 billion last year, made four times its money.

Write to Miriam Gottfried at [email protected] and Cara Lombardo at [email protected]

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Appeared in the December 21, 2020, print edition as ‘RealPage Is Sold For $9.6 Billion.’

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