(Bloomberg) -- Caisse de Depot et Placement du Quebec is investing C$125 million ($93 million) in closely held software company GSoft Inc. to help the firm bolster its product portfolio through acquisitions.
The purchase makes Caisse, Canada’s second-biggest pension manager with about C$400 billion, the first outside investor in Montreal-based GSoft. The fund is required to contribute to Quebec’s economic development and is looking to increase its assets in the province to C$100 billion by 2026, up 28% from the end of last year.
For GSoft, the investment from CDPQ will be used to bolster its lineup of human resources and employee-experience software, which includes ShareGate and Officevibe. GSoft Chief Executive Officer Simon De Baene said that while the company has managed to grow and remain profitable without diluting the founders’ ownership for 17 years, it now has an opportunity to expand rapidly through takeovers, especially in the US, since other bidders are scarce.
“It’s good timing for us to approach different opportunities in the market,” De Baene said in an interview. “We’re really looking to complement what we have right now. We can’t just be a portfolio of disparate products.”
GSoft’s products are used by more than 16,000 companies worldwide, including IKEA of Sweden AB and Salesforce Inc. The rise of remote working has been a catalyst for the 400-employee company, which recently hit C$100 million in annual revenue.
Caisse is the largest shareholder in Montreal-based technology companies CGI Inc. and Lightspeed Commerce Inc., and it was a major backer of Nuvei Corp., which went public in 2021. It also has invested in Hopper Inc., an emerging flight and hotel reservation application.
“What we also want to bring to Simon and his team is our expertise and our network,” Kim Thomassin, an executive vice-president at Caisse focused on the Quebec market, said of the GSoft investment. “We want to grow the business, and perhaps identify opportunities together for acquisitions.”
©2023 Bloomberg L.P.