Germany based software company, SAP, announced in a statement on Sunday that it is acquiring survey software company Qualtrics for $8 billion in an all-cash deal that has been approved by the boards of both companies and by Qualtrics shareholders. Qualtrics competes with SurveyMonkey, which went public in September. Qualtrics is bigger and growing faster than SurveyMonkey and is also more profitable.
SAP has been counting on new cloud products for growth as the transition away from traditional desktop software has taken business from its core enterprise resource planning business. In October, it raised its outlook following a 41% jump in third-quarter cloud revenue. SAP said it now expects revenue growth of 7.5% to 8.5% this year, up from the prior range of 6 to 7.5%.
Based on investor demand, the Qualtrics IPO was 13 times oversubscribed, a person familiar with the offering said. J.P. Morgan Chase advised SAP on the deal. Qatalyst Partners, Frank Quattrone’s firm, advised Qualtrics even though Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley were the listed lead banks for the IPO.
Provo, Utah based Qualtrics was founded in 2002 by brothers Ryan and Jared Smith and their dad, Scott, along with Stuart Orgill, who resigned from the board last year. The company had 1,915 employees as of September 30th.
Qualtrics gets most of its sales from subscriptions and also generates revenue from a research on demand option that existing customers can use to get feedback from “a curated group of respondents,” and from professional services. In the first half of 2018, the company recorded revenue growth of 41.7% to $184.2 million. Presently, it has more than 9,000 customers, including BlackRock, Kellogg, Microsoft, Mastercard and Under Armour. In addition to SurveyMonkey, Qualtrics said its competitors include Aon Hewitt, Medallia and Willis Towers Watson.