Earlier this morning, Fortune posted a story saying Corsair was about to be acquired. As the paper reported, Corsair had "indefinitely postponed" a planned initial public offering (IPO) last spring, and it now planned to sell itself to venture capital firm Francisco Partners.
It was an interesting story—but it wasn't quite right. In reality, Francisco Partners is going to invest a relatively small amount of cash in Corsair to help the company pursue other acquisitions.
That's the gist of a clarifying e-mail we received from Corsair earlier this afternoon. The firm says the investment from Francisco Partners, which is expected to go through within the next few weeks, will amount to "approximately $75M." Francisco Partners will become a "new shareholder," but "no management changes are planned" after the transaction, and it doesn't sound like the venture capital firm will have a majority stake. (Corsair posted revenue of $455.2 million in 2011 and claims it's still profitable today. I expect it's worth well over a billion dollars at this point. Perhaps closer to $2 billion.)
While the $75 million investment won't give Francisco Partners control of the company, it will help Corsair fuel further acquisitions. Corsair sought an IPO last year for the same reason, but it now views private investors as kinder to its business than the stock market. "[W]e believed the public markets did not properly understand or value our market niche," it explains.
Corsair has already proceeded with a couple of buyouts over the past year, seemingly without outside capital. In August, it snatched up Raptor Gaming, a maker of gaming peripherals based in Germany. Headsets and mice bearing the Corsair Raptor brand are already available at Newegg. In February of this year, Corsair also purchased Simple Audio, a small Scottish company that makes an Apple TV-like music streaming device for the living room.
Thanks to this fresh influx of cash from Francisco Partners, Corsair says it "may pursue more acquisitions, perhaps some larger than before." The company also intends to "take a more aggressive approach to becoming a leader in the gaming and music markets."
I think it's good to see a company like Corsair strive aggressively for growth. There's a lot of doom and gloom surrounding the PC market lately, but companies like Corsair are evidence that things are still going strong in the PC enthusiast niche. And it doesn't hurt that Corsair hardware is often a cut above the competition. Quite a few of the company's products, from power supplies and cases to keyboards, have earned TR awards in the past.
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