S&P Global close to acquisition of research platform Visible Alpha

S&P Global, a financial data company, is close to acquiring research platform Visible Alpha. The deal values Visible Alpha at over $500 million and includes investment banks Goldman Sachs, Jefferies, and UBS.S&P, best known for its rating agency business and stock market indices, could announce a deal for Visible Alpha as soon as Tuesday, the people said. S&P declined to comment and Visible Alpha did not respond to a request for comment.

New York-based Visible Alpha pools together investment research and financial models by sellside investment banks into aggregated data for asset managers.

It was founded in 2015 by Bank America, Citigroup, Jefferies, Morgan Stanley and UBS, and generated close to $100mn in revenue in 2023, through selling to buy side investors and corporate clients. Data is provided by around 200 financial firms. The final purchase price by S&P will vary based on performance targets.

Besides Goldman Sachs, BNP, and Santander, other investment banks have also invested in Visible Alpha. According to data from PitchBook, the company has raised $68 million.
For the investment banks, the sale would represent a successful exit for a business they had founded nine years ago to better monetise their research and data.

The banks have agreed to contribute their research and financial models to Visible Alpha as part of the acquisition.
S&P wants to improve its services to compete with Bloomberg in the financial data market. The deal will bolster its Capital IQ Pro platform and allow for forward financial modelling.

S&P completed the purchase of IHS Markit three years ago for $44bn. The CEO, Doug Peterson, recently stated that the company is open to making smaller acquisitions.
Since closing the IHS deal, S&P’s share price is up about 13 percent, slightly lagging its benchmark S&P 500 index.