Japan's NEC snaps up NHS and police technology provider Northgate Public Services
Japanese tech giant NEC has struck a £475 million deal to buy UK software firm Northgate Public Services (NPS), which holds key contracts with the police and the NHS.
NEC said it will use the deal to push into the UK and Australian markets, while putting NPS through an international expansion drive across North America and Asia.
The move calls time on Cinven's three-year ownership of NPS, but the private equity house will continue to hold a seat on the board.
Hemel Hempstead-based NPS, which employs 2,000 staff worldwide, provides software which underpins many public services, including technology that collects UK council tax and administers out-of-work benefits.
Stephen Callaghan, NPS chief executive, said the firm will offer clients more services, expand into new sectors and bolster its geographic footprint following the takeover.
He said: "The increased financial strength, technical capability and market access support NEC provides will allow us to accelerate our growth plans considerably and I am enthusiastic about our future prospects."
NPS technology has screened eight million babies for hearing loss, while 14 police forces use the firm to boost information exchange on victims and offenders.
Mr Callaghan has been overhauling the business since joining in 2016, sealing contracts with the South Australia Housing Trust, Richmond and Wandsworth Councils, and West Midlands Police.
Takashi Niino, NEC president and CEO, said the takeover will hand the company "significant technological advantages".
He said: "NPS's excellent reputation and existing access into international markets are ideal for enabling NEC to accelerate business expansion, particularly for our world-leading biometrics and AI technology."
NEC and NPS will not embark on a board-level shake-up as part of the deal and have ruled out any redundancies.