Francisco Partners Said to Explore Both Sale and IPO for EFront

Francisco Partners is preparing to exit its investment in financial-software company EFront through a sale or an initial public offering, people with knowledge of the matter said.

Francisco Partners, a technology-focused private-equity firm, is working with Barclays Plc to explore a dual track for the company, the people said, which makes software for alternative investments and risk management. EFront, based in Paris, may fetch as much as $500 million in a sale, said the people, who asked not to be identified because the information is private.

Barclays plans to begin soliciting initial offers for EFront in early October from financial software and services providers including Markit Ltd., SS&C Technologies Holdings Inc., Broadridge Financial Solutions Inc. and Nasdaq OMX Group Inc., the people said.

Spokesmen for Barclays, Nasdaq, SS&C and Broadridge declined to comment. Representatives for Markit and Francisco Partners didn’t return calls seeking comment.

Francisco Partners acquired a majority stake in EFront in 2011 that valued the company at 68 million euros ($88 million), according to a statement at the time.

Exploring a sale and an IPO, known as a dual-track process, can help propel a sale by pressuring buyers to act before a share sale puts the company in the hands of public investors.

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