Specialist eCommerce platform provider and digital marketing consultancy, Visualsoft, has secured a substantial investment from Livingbridge, one of the UK’s leading mid-market private equity investors.

The deal will fund the continued expansion and innovation of Visualsoft’s successful eCommerce platform, which is on course to deliver a billion pounds of client revenue by the end of this year, with platform revenue also up 31 per cent year-on-year in Q3.

Visualsoft, founded in Teesside in 1998, now employs over 280 people with additional offices in Newcastle, Manchester and Dubai. It serves over 1,000 retail businesses.

For the past 22 years, the company has been developing industry-leading eCommerce services, having continually built upon its innovative eCommerce platform to ensure that it remains at the forefront of the industry. It also offers retail partners a ground-breaking ‘shared success’ model, removing many of the upfront set-up costs and linking its fees to the actual sales and revenue generated for clients.

More recently, Visualsoft has also launched its Visualsoft Partners offering – a partnership programme designed to empower solutions providers to grow their business, build their network and increase the revenue of the retailers they work with. Alongside this, the business has also launched Visualsoft Partner Connect, which is an online directory that allows retailers to find new partners quickly and easily, all in one place.

Dean Benson, CEO at Visualsoft, said: “Over the past two decades Visualsoft’s world class technology and passion for innovation has consistently disrupted the eCommerce landscape. I am delighted to have partnered with Livingbridge and we will now work in collaboration to further accelerate growth and strengthen our position as an industry leader.

“This growth will also see our continued commitment to developing strong digital skills within our regions and forming strong and lasting partnerships with other businesses and specialists within the digital sector though the Visualsoft Partners programme.”

Mark Advani at Livingbridge, said: “Visualsoft provides a functionally rich, high service e-commerce platform solution to its customers. It is ideally positioned to capitalise on the accelerated shift to online retail and the rise in independent retailers and progressive brands. We are excited by the prospect of working closely with Dean Benson and the management team to help Visualsoft serve more brands and retailers – both directly and through its expanding network of channel partners.”

The investment, made through Livingbridge’s Enterprise 3 fund, builds on Livingbridge’s experience with technology businesses, having already invested in TitanHQ earlier this year.

The principal advisors on this investment for Livingbridge included PwC and Eversheds. The vendors were advised by KPMG, Endeavour Partnership and Deloitte.

Rod Wilkinson, who leads KPMG’s Corporate Finance team in Newcastle, said: “This is an exciting business which is successfully supporting its clients in growing their online sales; a trend that’s only going to persist as the shift in consumer behaviour since the first lockdown, will continue to favour online shopping. The deal is the latest indicator of the appetite from investors for tech-enabled businesses, which are driving economic growth.”