Nielen Schuman advised TravelBird on mezzanine financing deal

29 September 2016

TravelBird, a startup in the travel industry that has successfully grown into a scale-up, has attracted around €5 million in mezzanine financing. With the added capital – the process was supported by Nielen Schuman – TravelBird wants to improve the supply and quality of its holidays packages and further personalise its app.

Since its inception in 2010, in the Netherlands, TravelBird has grown strongly to a team of over 450 staff. Last year TravelBird facilitated the travel plans of 1.2 million travellers, a feat which saw its revenue grow by 85% in FY15.

Over the past five years the Amsterdam-based travel scale-up has received several investments from venture capitalists, including three rounds of funding from German powerhouse Rocket Internet, which reportedly holds a stake of around 25% in the company. The latest round was completed in the summer of 2015 and involved a €16.5 million investment by the fund, established by the German brothers Samwer in 2013.

In a bid to accommodate further growth plans, according to TravelBird co-founders Dennis Klompalberts and Symen Jansma, the firm earlier this month struck a Mezzanine loan deal with Main Mezzanine Capital, the capital lending arm of private equity house Main Capital Partners. “I am very pleased with this opportunity. The large loan enables our company to match even better our offers to the individual wishes and needs of our travellers. These personalised quality improvements for our travellers are crucial for future growth and will help us to continuously stay one step ahead in the coming years”, explains Jansma, who fulfills the CEO role.


In 2014 and 2015 TravelBird invested €32 million in professionalising its digital infrastructure. The loan will be used to complete the final stages of the IT transition, which include, among others, the further optimisation of the site and personalisation of the app. The mezzanine financing has been structured as a loan because the co-founders wanted to prevent further dilution of the existing shares.

Details on the size of the loan have not been disclosed, although Lars van 't Hoenderdaal, CEO of Main Mezzanine, says that it represents the largest loan it has provided since the inception of its portfolio in Q2 2014 (analysts estimate the loan at around €5 million). Commenting on the decision to invest in TravelBird, he says that the private equity firm has been following the scale-up for quite some time now, and is impressed by the combination of international growth and, since Q3 2016, profitable operations. “TravelBird has a strong management team and we have faith in their abilities of continuing profitable growth.”

Netherlands based financial advisory firm Nielen Schuman acted as financial consultant to TravelBird.


Capgemini provides IT services for BAE Systems Maritime-Submarines

24 April 2019

BAE Systems Maritime-Submarines has confirmed a five-year contract with Capgemini to take over the provision of a spectrum of IT services in the UK. The deal will help BAE Systems Maritime-Submarines reduce the cost of IT from its base in Barrow-in-Furness in Cumbria.

Since the firm’s UK profits were found to have halved in 2018, Capgemini has been working to improve its offering and attract new clients. In the summer, the global IT services consultancy combined a number of its creative wings to form Capgemini Invent, while a deal with Amazon Web Services enabled the firm to improve its cost-saving digital offering to clients looking for IT outsourcing work.

In the last year, Capgemini has subsequently won a series of contracts leveraging its IT delivery services on behalf of a variety of entities. The firm partnered with Statoil to deliver digital innovation across the company, as well as taking a role to innovate the fan experience of the Rugby World Cup 7s tournament, and replacing Atos as the IT services provider of McDonald’s

Capgemini provides IT services for BAE Systems Maritime-Submarines

Now, the firm has continued this surge of new business with the confirmation of a partnership with BAE Systems, which will see Capgemini collaborate on a key defence contract. Capgemini’s five-year contract with BAE Systems Maritime-Submarines will see Capgemini take over the provision of a spectrum of IT services for the BAE wing in the UK, including service orchestration, networking, hosting, end-user computing, DevOps, reporting and analytics, automation, and a digital service desk.

BAE Systems has been looking to improve its bottom line in the UK in recent years, and the move is aimed at transforming its Maritime-Submarines business IT delivery, allowing the company to take advantage of innovative digital technologies, create better user experiences, ensure high service availability, and reduce the cost of IT, from its base in Barrow-in-Furness in Cumbria. Capgemini’s IT solution was selected because of its ability to support the company’s evolving requirements, including the need to further enhance the responsiveness of the IT service, and effectiveness and agility of the delivery model.

Stephen Cole, CIO, BAE Systems Submarines, said, “As we embarked on this critical programme for our Submarines business that will deliver improved agile digital services, world-class service transformation and orchestration capabilities underpinned by very strong references were essential in our selection process. We are confident that Capgemini met these requirements and is the right partner for us. The team really understands where we are trying to get to as a business and its collaborative approach alongside its commitment to developing skills in the local area were paramount to our decision.”

Paul Margetts, Managing Director, UK Business Unit at Capgemini, added, “We are delighted to expand upon our business relationship with BAE Systems. Having worked with the company over the past four years, we have seen the tremendous opportunities for change that this programme presents and are hugely excited to be part of the journey at BAE Systems Maritime-Submarines, to help the company make a step change and satisfy new business requirements. We also look forward to increasing our involvement with the local North West community and Barrow in particular.”