High growth and consolidation of the HR software market

The HR Software market is continuously growing, further accelerated by the boost in digitalization that the Covid-19 pandemic initiated.

The market is projected to grow from ~€24.0 billion in 2021 to ~€35.4 billion in 2028 by a CAGR of 5.7%.

The key market drivers underlying the growth are:

  • Increased need of tracking and improving employee engagements and efficiency;
  • Increasing demand for labor and cost saving automation software;
  • Strong growth in the number of SMEs that require (scalable) HR solutions;
  • Increasing adoption of cloud technologies such as Software as a Service (Saas).

Increasing M&A Activity and consolidation 

Over the last years there has been increasing M&A activity and consolidation in the HR Software market.

The HR Software market has some large players but remains relatively fragmented globally. Financial buyers are also picking up on the interesting characteristics of the market and are diving into it:

  • Venture Capital – In 2021, Venture Capital funds poured more than €13 billion into the HR technology market, with the volume of investment more than tripling from 2020 to 2021.
  • Private Equity – A growth strategy often used by Private Equity is Buy & Build. The HR Software market is very interesting for Private Equity due to the high projected growth of the market; the scalability of the software, the recurring revenues and because the market is still fragmented.
  • A few landmark deals closed in the last couple of years:
    • Personio, a leading HR software company for small and mid-sized businesses from Germany, announced a Series E round from new investors, adding $200 million to the initial financing raised in October 2021. The new funding brings the total capital raised through its Series E to $470 million, valuing the company at $8.5 billion, making it one of the fastest growing and most valuable software startups worldwide.
    • Alight Solutions, a leading cloud-based provider of integrated digital human capital and business solutions, went public in 2021 at the NYSE after a $7.3 billion SPAC merger with Foley. Blackstone sold Alight to the SPAC vehicle.
    • Ultimate Software, a cloud-based provider and developer of human capital management software systems merged with Kronos, which also provides cloud solutions for work force and human capital management in 2020. The merged company, the Ultimate Kronos Group (UKG) was valued at $22 billion after the merger.
      Furthermore, Capitalmind Investec sold BCS, a leading Human Resource Management and Payroll software provider in the Benelux, to Main Capital Partners in April ’22 (please see: Sale of BCS to Main Capital | Capitalmind Investec)

Over the last years, Private Equity buyers are becoming more active in the HR Software market and many players have initiated a Buy & Build strategy in the sector.

Please download our report to see a selection of the active and potentially interested Private Equity buyers in the Benelux HR Software market and the valuations in the market.

Ausgewählte Insights