First Acquisition Closes with Miami-Based Protranslating, an Industry-Leading Language & Translation Company Founded in 1973
ATLANTA & MIAMI–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Atlanta-based BIG Language Solutions announces its launch and the acquisition of Protranslating, a leader in the global language services industry founded in Miami by Dr. Luis A. de la Vega in 1973. BIG was founded by CEO Jeff Brink in partnership with MSouth Equity Partners, an Atlanta-based private equity firm with substantial resources including $2.2 billion in assets under management.
BIG is disrupting the highly fragmented $50 billion language industry by assembling a portfolio of high-performing and complementary language service providers (LSPs), then adding significant value and leveraging synergies for the collective benefit of its companies and customers. The company is led by Jeff Brink, a 25-year language industry veteran, known for his leadership, innovation and success in building leading LSPs, including the Brink family of companies, and most recently United Language Group.
Brink’s partnership with MSouth was attractive because of the firm’s focus and successful track record in investing in mid-market, growth-oriented business services companies that are delivering solid results and ready to scale. Brink says: “We conducted an extensive process while searching for the ideal private equity partner and are thrilled to work with MSouth as we have exceptional alignment on vision, values and ethics. They have a strong reputation for working with proven management teams and stimulating both organic and acquisition-driven growth.”
The team at MSouth envisions substantial follow-on investment for BIG to include subsequent acquisitions, new and enhanced technology, and a growth-oriented infrastructure. “We are excited to partner with an industry veteran such as Jeff and fully support his vision to launch and build BIG Language Solutions,” says Anthony Hauser, Principal at MSouth. “We believe the company is well positioned to capitalize on increasing demand for translation, interpretation, and related language services, particularly for high value content within regulated verticals.”
The cornerstone of BIG’s buy-and-build investment strategy is its acquisition of Protranslating. A best-in-class company, Protranslating has more than 1,000 people touching product each month translating more than 150 million words per year in 200+ languages to organizations across the globe. According to Brink, “Protranslating has long been considered a gem in our industry, and their leadership, staff, technology and operational platforms are foundational to our ambitious long-term plans. The de la Vega family has developed an impressive business and culture, and I look forward to working closely with Luis de la Vega and his leadership team.”
The investment in Protranslating is meant to fuel what is already in place. “The timing of a partnership with Jeff is perfect for our business,” says Luis R. de la Vega, CEO of Protranslating. “My family started this company 46 years ago and it continues to be successful because of our enduring focus on quality and customer service, but we thrive because of the thousands of people we employ around the world who do remarkable work around the clock. This investment from the outside allows us to grow from the inside and build on what we have today.”
Continues de la Vega: “We had been approached by several competitors and investments partners but ultimately chose to collaborate with BIG and MSouth. Three primary reasons stand out – the unique business model Jeff Brink has built, the cultural similarities between all parties, and the shared vision around the scale and focus of BIG Language Solutions.”
Additional acquisitions are in the works for BIG with an approach that is unique and founder friendly. BIG offers LSP owners the opportunity to join its Legacy Advisory Board in addition to an ownership position in BIG, enabling owners the ability to maximize their exit monetization. “The timing is good to aggregate a number of small- to medium-size LSPs because rapid technology advancements are making it increasingly difficult for these companies to compete on their own,” says Brink. “Selling is a weighty decision for any owner. Having been on both sides of the deal table many times, I am empathetic to seller concerns and have developed a model that creates the ultimate win-win for everyone.”
The acquisition of Protranslating closed June 21, 2019. BIG is headquartered in Atlanta’s Buckhead business district. For more information, visit www.biglanguage.com.
About BIG Language Solutions:
BIG Language Solutions is disrupting the language industry by assembling a portfolio of high-performing and complementary LSPs, then adding value and leveraging synergies for the collective benefit of these companies and customers. BIG is led by language industry veterans with a history of innovation and success and founded in partnership with MSouth Equity Partners. Learn more at www.biglanguage.com.
About MSouth Equity Partners:
MSouth Equity Partners is a private equity investment firm that provides equity capital and expertise to support management teams in acquisitions and recapitalizations of lower middle market companies typically valued between $25 and $125 million. Based in Atlanta, MSouth invests primarily in the South with a consistent focus on management buyouts of companies in sectors where the firm has significant investment, management and transactional experience. MSouth invests with the objective of increasing operating cash flow through growth initiatives and active ownership. With $2.2 billion of assets under management across four funds, MSouth is a successor to Cravey, Green & Wahlen, Inc., which was founded in 1984. Learn more at www.msouth.com.
Founded in 1973, Protranslating is an ISO-Certified language company providing a complete range of services, including translation, interpreting, and localization, in more than 100 languages for global and Fortune 500 companies. Drawing from a pool of expert linguists, using predictive technologies, and more than 46 years of experience, Protranslating delivers end-to-end language solutions to clients across diverse industries, including legal, finance, market research, technology, healthcare, manufacturing, retail, travel and tourism, and marketing. Learn more at www.protranslating.com.
Lisa Tilt, Full Tilt Consulting