Baltisse acquires majority stake in specialist HR services group World of Talents
Fast-growing HR services group World of Talents, which specialises in bottleneck professions, has taken the next step in their growth process by bringing Belgian investment company Baltisse on board as majority stakeholder. After a period of strong organic growth and four acquisitions, Sofindev is selling its stake in the group. Steve Rousseau (CEO) and the management team will remain important stakeholders of the group.
House of Talents, the Belgian entity of World of Talents and founded in 2008 by Steve Rousseau, is a rapidly growing platform in the HR sector that is active in the Benelux, France and Germany. The company has provided secondment, interim and recruitment services for approximately 1,400 SMEs and companies. World of Talents differentiates itself from the competition by its strict focus on bottleneck professions, for which demand is structurally high and growing. The platform has 12 business units specialised in 11 bottleneck professions, such as nursing, engineering and butchery. In 2018, the group generated €100 million in turnover.
Baltisse’s investment is in keeping with the well thought-out and ambitious growth plans at House of Talents. Those plans focus on organic growth combined with acquisitions at home and abroad. There is also a major focus on automating the ‘matchmaking’ process. “Continuous investment in people, our qualitative approach, and innovative entrepreneurship are at the heart of our growth strategy”, explains Steve Rousseau, CEO of House of Talents. “With their focus on quality and expertise, our Talent Consultants are making a difference in the field.”
In the search for a new partner, Steve Rousseau was particularly concerned about ensuring a strong economic and cultural fit. He clarifies: “We needed a new partner to achieve our ambitions for the future. An important factor in our choice of Baltisse was the preservation of our individuality, approach and the values of House of Talents. We are absolutely convinced that the drive and expertise of the Baltisse team will support us in implementing our ambitious growth plans. Through our continued growth, we are broadening our pool of experts in niche segments. This wider range of workers is crucial for our partners and will enable them to grow further.”
Jan Camerlynck and Carlo Daelemans from Sofindev: “The past two years have flown by. Together with Steve Rousseau and the management team at House of Talents, we have been able to create tremendous momentum and achieve exceptional growth. In this period, turnover more than tripled to €100 million, and the gross operating profit more than quadrupled. This development was made possible by a combination of organic growth and four targeted acquisitions (Arcq, Chaintec Group, Value Builders and Mides). Today, the group is the undisputed market leader in project-based staffing for bottleneck professions in Belgium. It has also taken its first steps beyond Belgium with activities in the Netherlands, France and Germany. We are very pleased and proud to have far exceeded the targets we set ourselves when we entered into a partnership with Steve Rousseau at the end of 2016. Of course, the many achievements are a result of the work by the entire competent and passionate team. We sincerely thank them for their commitment, the work they have delivered and their talent.”
Filip Balcaen from Baltisse about this deal: “The Belgian labour market is in a state of transformation and has a structural shortage of qualified personnel, a fact that many company managers face every day. We are excited to work with the House of Talents team to address these needs and to help write the next chapter for the company. Over the past 10 years, Steve Rousseau and his team have built a unique company and an impressive track record. We will leverage our network and expertise to support the team so clients can always rely on the impactful and unique quality service House of Talents offers.”
The transaction was overseen by ARGO Law, Deloitte and Nielen Schuman for House of Talents and by Stibbe, PWC and EY for Baltisse. No further financial details about the transaction will be disclosed.