Vista Equity Partners

Vista Equity Partners is an American investment firm focused on financing and forwarding software, data and technology-enabled startup businesses.[2] Vista has invested in hundreds of companies, including Misys, Ping Identity, and Marketo.

Vista Equity Partners Management, LLC
IndustryPrivate equity
Founded2000; 21 years ago (2000)
Number of locations
Key people

The company has offices in several cities, including Austin, Texas, New York City, and San Francisco.[3][4][5]


Vista Equity Partners was founded in 2000 by American businessman and investor Robert F. Smith, who is chairman and CEO. Vista opened its first office in San Francisco in 2000.[6] In November 2008, the company closed a funding round for its first institutional fund with a total of $1.3 billion raised.[7]

Vista is known for applying detailed scrutiny in human resources when investing in firms, in a procedure it calls Vista Standard Operating Procedures.[8]

In 2010, Brian N. Sheth was promoted to president and awarded the title of co-founder of the firm. He remained in this role until his departure in 2020.[9][10]

In 2011, the company opened an office in Austin, Texas.[6] Vista added several private equity funds and credit funds to its portfolio,[11][12][13] including its first fund, the Vista Credit Opportunities Fund, which raised $196 million.[13][14] During that time, Vista opened several funds that specifically target middle-market companies[15] and emerging technology companies.[16] The company also has a permanent capital investment fund, Vista Equity Partners Perennial, which focuses on growing vertical market software companies.[17][18]

In 2018, Vista was named the top software investor of the past decade by Pitchbook.[19][20] Also in 2018, Vista's sale of Marketo to Adobe was named Deal of the Year by Buyouts magazine.[21] In 2019, Vista was named Dealmaker of the Year at the PitchBook Private Equity Awards.[22]

As of May 2020, Vista had more than $57 billion in capital commitments.[23] In 2020, Vista joined Diligent Corporation's modern leadership initiative and pledged to create five new board roles among its portfolio companies for racially diverse candidates.[24][25]

In August 2021, its chief operating officer David Breach was announced as president of Vista, the previous incumbent, Brian N. Sheth, a Vista co-founder, resigning in 2020 following the criminal tax investigation of CEO Smith.[26]


In August 2000, Vista invested in SourceNet Solutions, a provider of finance and accounting business process outsourcing services.[27][28] Between 2001 an 2005, Vista invested in several software companies, including BigMachines, a provider of product configuration software,[29] and Aspect Communications, a contact center technology company,[30] among others.[6] In 2005, Vista invested in MDSI Mobile Data Solutions.[31]

In 2006, Vista invested in Reynolds and Reynolds, an auto technology company.[32] The following year, Vista acquired Indus International, which it later merged with MDSI Mobile Data Solutions to form Ventyx, Inc.[31] That year, the company also invested in SirsiDynix, a library software company.[33][34] In 2008, Vista acquired P2 Energy Solutions Inc, a software company that helps oil and gas producers keep track of drilling leases.[35] The following year, the company acquired SumTotal Systems from Accel Partners and Kohlberg Kravis Roberts,[36][37] as well as MicroEdge from Advent Software.[38] In 2011, the firm acquired multiple companies, including Sage Healthcare, an electronic health records company,[39] which it renamed Vitera Healthcare Solutions.[40]

Between 2012 and 2013, Vista acquired companies including Bullhorn, Inc. a CRM software provider;[41][42] Misys, a British software company;[43] Websense;[44][45][46] and Active Network, Inc, an online event registration service.[47][48] Between 2014 and 2015, Vista acquired Automated Insights, a software company specializing in natural-language generation;[41] Main Street Hub, a social-media company;,[49] PowerSchool, a provider of educational technology, and TIBCO Software,[50] a company that specializes in big data and software integrations, among others.[51]

In 2016, Vista acquired Cvent for $1.65 billion [52]and announced agreements to acquire Marketo, a marketing automation software company,[53] and Ping Identity, a single sign-on digital security company.[54] The company invested in Granicus[55] and Vivid Seats that same year.[56] In 2017, Vista acquired several software companies, including NAVEX Global.[57] That year, the company also invested in Upserve, a restaurant software provider, (WSJ, 2017) and Market Track.[58]

In 2018, Vista acquired Apptio, a cloud-based business management software,[59] and entered into an agreement to acquire Mindbody.[60] That year, Vista invested in several other companies, including Wrike, a provider of project management software.[61] In 2019, Vista bought a majority stake in Acquia,[62] and completed its first IPO when it took Ping Identity public.[63] Also in 2019, Vista purchased Sonatype, a cybersecurity, open-source automation company[64] and Accelya, a technology provider for the airline industry.[17] In 2020, Vista acquired Tripleseat, a web-based sales and event management company,[65] and purchased a 2.32% stake in Jio Platforms.[66]

In November 2020, Vista acquired CRM-Software provider Pipedrive for $1.5 billion.[67] In the same month, Vista also acquired Customer Success company Gainsight for $1.1 Billion. [68]

In April 2021, Vista completed its acquisition of Pluralsight for $22.50 per share. [69]

In September 2021, Vista acquired Blue Prism for £1.095 billion ($1.5 billion), and announced they intended to merge it into Tibco.[70]


In December 2004, Vista sold SourceNet Solutions to Mellon Financial.[28]

Between 2010 and 2013, Vista sold several companies, including Ventyx to ABB Group,[31] BigMachines to Oracle,[71] and P2 Energy Solutions to Advent International Corp.[72] In September 2014, Vista announced the sale of MicroEdge to Blackbaud.[73] In 2015, the company sold Websense to Raytheon.[74]

Between 2015 and 2020, Vista divested other companies, including selling BullHorn, Inc to Insight Venture Partners,[75] selling parts of Active Network to Global Payments Inc.,[76] and selling NAVEX Global to BC Partners.[77] During this time, Vista also sold SirsiDynix to ICV Partners,[34] and Main Street Hub to GoDaddy.[78] In September 2018, Vista announced it would sell Marketo to Adobe Systems.[79]


In September 2017, Vista and their companies pledged $1 million to assist the Akshaya Patra Foundation in delivering meals to Indian school children.[80] In 2019, Robert F. Smith committed to eliminate the student loan debt of the Morehouse College Class of 2019.[81] He paid $34 million to cover the students' loans and the loans of their parents for their studies.[81][82]

Tax evasionEdit

In 2020 Vista were associated with tax evasion, with CEO Smith voluntarily disclosing hundreds of millions to the IRS in return for a non-prosecution agreement being a co-operating witness in the prosecution major Vista investor Robert T. Brockman; President and co-founder Brian N. Sheth departing Vista in the fallout.[83]


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