Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.
Headquartered in San Diego, California, Aplus.Net provides a variety of website presence solutions including domain registration services, web hosting, dedicated server hosting, web design and web marketing services to approximately 90,000 small- and medium-sized businesses ("SMBs"). Founders Ivan and Lilian Vachovsky will retain an ownership stake and Mr. Vachovsky continues to serve on the board of directors. Mr. Vachovsky has resigned from the CEO position to pursue other opportunities.
Aplus.Net has over 300 employees with operations in San Diego and Sacramento, California, Phoenix, Arizona, Sofia, Bulgaria and Manila, Philippines. Web hosting industry veteran Gabriel Murphy will co-invest alongside Catalyst Investors, be appointed to the board of directors and serve as the Chief Executive Officer. Mr. Murphy co-founded CommuniTech.Net in 1997 and sold it to Web.com in February of 2002.
"Catalyst considers web hosting a highly profitable business with strong organic growth. We have been working with Gabriel for several years. He brings the right combination of both sales and systems expertise to drive profitable growth at internet-based companies such as Aplus.Net. With a strong culture of profit-minded sales growth and customer care, Aplus.Net is an excellent platform for building what we believe will be the leading company in the hosting industry," commented Tyler Newton, Principal at Catalyst.
Mr. Murphy added, "Aplus.net is a rapidly growing, highly profitable web presence firm. The company has a very effective sales model along with a high level of automation and very strong product set. We look forward to continuing the growth trajectory of the business and introducing additional products and services to our SMB customer base."
Catalyst was advised by Daniels & Associates, of Denver and New York, on the acquisition and debt financing of the transaction. Aplus.Net was advised by SG Capital of Los Angeles.
Based in New York City, Catalyst Investors (catalystinvestors.com) is a private equity fund that provides equity capital to companies in the media, communications and related Internet services industries. It focuses on growth areas within the middle market, investing $5 to $30 million alongside management teams to fund expansion, acquisitions or recapitalizations. In addition to capital, Catalyst brings extensive industry experience and a broad network of relationships that includes a select group of prominent industry operating partners.
A recognized industry leader in web services since the Internet's commercial start in 1995, Aplus.Net is one of the top ten privately held hosting companies in the United States. Specializing in helping small businesses build a customer base via the Internet, Aplus.Net offers award- winning services that include web hosting and design, dedicated servers, online marketing, e-commerce, domain name registration, and much more. Aplus.Net has been awarded many honors for excellence, including the prestigious CNET Editors' Choice Award, and has been featured in top U.S. business publications such as Forbes, Entrepreneur, Black Enterprise, and PC Magazine.