German Equity Partners V (‘GEP V’ or the ‘Fund’), a fund managed by independent German investment company ECM Equity Capital Management GmbH (‘ECM’), has invested in the telematics software provider YellowFox GmbH (‘YellowFox’) in the context of a partnership investment. YellowFox offers modular, cloud-based SaaS software solutions for digital fleet and object management that enables substantial increases in productivity and cost efficiency as well as regulatory compliance. The solutions are suitable for all industries, fleet sizes and vehicle types. Co-founder Hendrik Scherf as well as the other shareholders will retain a stake in the company. Together with ECM, Hendrik Scherf and the management team will lead the telematics specialist into the next phase of its development. The parties have agreed not to disclose financial details of the transaction.
The entire telematics world from a single source
YellowFox was founded in 2003 with headquarters in Kesselsdorf near Dresden and employs 70 people today. The company has a broadly diversified customer base across the DACH region and Benelux with around 60,000 active systems operated by both large companies and small businesses. YellowFox serves a wide range of industries – from the transport and logistics sector to industrial service providers, the construction industry, craftsmen and waste disposal providers, as well as rail, bus and taxi companies. YellowFox’ telematics solutions enable simple and efficient generation, analysis and presentation of data as well as communication between the company, employees, fleet vehicles, objects and mobile devices. The high degree of standardisation, cloud architecture, interfaces and modular design allow new customers and additional systems to be connected quickly and without significant implementation efforts.
The company follows a holistic approach – from internal software development and product manufacturing to the operation of data centres in Germany, sales and marketing as well as customer support. This ensures the highest quality, innovative strength, availability as well as customer service and thus a high level of customer satisfaction. Since inception, YellowFox has continuously expanded its solutions portfolio to include innovative features that go beyond traditional telematics. The customer’s entire vehicle fleet and movable asset base can be tracked, evaluated and controlled with just one click. The telematics offering is modular and can be expanded as required to include various functionalities such as tachographic data management, driving style analysis, object management, working time and activity recording, driving licence control, expense accounting, route planning as well as comprehensive fleet and order management solutions.
Expansion of the leading market position in a dynamically growing market
Due to increasingly strict legal regulations throughout Europe with regard to commercial drivers and data management of digital control devices as well as constantly increasing efficiency requirements, the use of telematics is now indispensable for competitive workflow management and cost-efficient operation of fleets and movable assets. The increasing adoption rate of telematics solutions results in strong market growth. YellowFox has firmly established itself as a leading provider and is one of the fastest-growing companies in Europe in this fragmented market. The successful growth is now to receive additional impetus with ECM as an entrepreneurial partner. The focus will be on product innovation and the acquisition of new customers as well as sales partnerships. The growth strategy also includes increasing penetration of sectors and applications where the adoption rate is still comparatively low. Targeted acquisitions to extend the solutions portfolio, also in related software spaces, and expand geographically are to complement organic growth.
With its extensive experience in supporting growth, internationalisation as well as buy-and-build strategies in medium-sized companies ECM will actively contribute to YellowFox’ further development. ECM has already backed various software companies as well as the logistics provider inTime. As such, ECM brings functional and industry-specific know-how as well as a long-standing industry network to its partnership with YellowFox.
Hendrik Scherf, co-founder and CEO of YellowFox, explained: ‘I am proud of the team at YellowFox, whose passion for telematics has helped develop the company into one of the market leaders in the DACH region. We would also like to thank our loyal customers and sales partners, with whom we always work as equals. For the next step in our development, we have now found in ECM an entrepreneurial investor with a great feel for SMEs. Together we want to take YellowFox to the next level.’
Florian Thelenberg, partner at ECM, added: ‘There is already no way around the use of intelligent telematics solutions in many sectors – if only to meet legal requirements and to realise transparency, efficiency and cost benefits. The requirements will continue to increase across all sectors. We see great potential for YellowFox. The areas of application for the telematics solutions are far from exhausted and the growth prospects are therefore exceptionally good. We are very pleased to support Hendrik Scherf and the highly motivated team in further developing YellowFox.’
GEP V was advised on this transaction by Taylor Wessing (legal), Flick Gocke Schaumburg (structuring), Codex (market due diligence), Ebner Stolz (finance and tax), Code & Co (IT) and Willis Towers Watson (insurance). Florian Thelenberg, Axel Eichmeyer, Tim Krume and Christoph Demers are responsible for the transaction at ECM. YellowFox was advised on the transaction by Carl Finance (M&A) and Deloitte Legal (legal and structuring).
About Yellow Fox GmbH (‘Yellow Fox’)
YellowFox, based in Kesselsdorf, develops telematics solutions for a wide range of industries, vehicles and movable assets as well as companies of various sizes. Development, sales and customer support are managed in-house. The company offers a comprehensive, modular and scalable solutions portfolio for digital fleet and object management. YellowFox thus supports its customers in increasing their productivity, cost efficiency, regulatory compliance and digitisation.
Further information at: www.yellowfox.de.
On behalf of ECM:
Charles Barker Corporate Communications GmbH
Georg Schattney, Kornelia Spodzieja, Tel.: +49 (0)69 7940 9044