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Vertiv’s ‘Next Chapter’ Begins With Public Market Debut

The data center infrastructure company is now listed on the New York Stock Exchange under the ticker symbol VRT in a move its CEO says will position the firm for growth.

One of the world’s largest data center infrastructure providers, Vertiv, is now officially a public company as private equity firms continue to take over the data center market. The Columbus, Ohio-based company is now listed on the New York Stock Exchange under the ticker symbol VRT following the company’s recent merger with GS Acquisition Holdings.

“Today marks an important milestone in Vertiv’s history, as we enter the public markets well positioned to create shareholder value and capture the growth opportunities we see on the horizon,” said Vertiv CEO Rob Johnson in a statement. “We have positioned Vertiv for its next chapter, and I couldn’t ask for a better team to be with on this journey.”

Vertiv becoming a public entity stems from its owner, private equity firm Platinum Equity, selling a portion of its stake to GS Acquisition Holding – a holding company created by a Goldman Sachs affiliate and former Honeywell CEO David Cote - for a deal valued at $5.3 billion. GS Acquisition Holding has now been renamed Vertiv Holding Co.

Heading into Monday’s public market opening, Platinum Equity held 38 percent share in Vertiv, investors held 37 percent and GS Acquisition Holdings held a 25 percent stake. In 2016, private equity firm Platinum Equity acquired Emerson’s Network Power division for $4 billion, which it later rebranded as Vertiv. Over the years, Vertiv acquired thermal management company Energy Labs, PDU specialist Geist and UK-based MEMS Power Generation.

[Related: ‘Largest Expansion Ever’: Vantage Data Centers $2 Billion Bet In Europe]

“Vertiv has a great position in a good industry with an excellent management team and solid strategy in place to continue building their leadership position in the market,” said Cote, executive chairman of Vertiv’s board of directors.” “As we’ve met with potential investors over the past few months and shared our story, it’s clear there is an appetite in the market for a company like Vertiv that demonstrates superb leadership and growth capabilities on a global scale.”

Vertiv made CRN’s 2019 Data Center 50 list while also receiving a five-star rating in CRN’s 2019 Partner Program Guide for its Vertiv Partner Program.

Private equity firms are taking over the data center market, accounting for approximately 80 percent of all data center acquisitions in 2019. This massive injection of private equity funding led data center M&A to reach a record high of approximately 105 deals in 2019, up 6 percent compared to 2018. Data centers are important assets that enable significant growth in cloud services and for hyperscale operators such as Amazon, Google and Microsoft.

Vertiv’s revenue comes from traditional enterprises as well as a growing number of hyperscale data center customers. The company is one of the leading products and services provider of data center infrastructure in the world with nearly 20,000 employees worldwide and operations in more than 130 countries. Vertiv sells a slew of hardware, software, analytics and services—including power backups, racks and enclosures, and centralized management software.

The company recently unveiled its plan to start the expansion of its AC Power Customer Experience Center in Italy, including a new 4MVA power infrastructure to boost testing capabilities, flexibility and efficiency. The enhancements to the center will more than double the testing capacity available for UPSs.

Vertiv has 19 manufacturing locations and more than 2,700 service field engineers with regional hubs in China, India, the U.K. and the Philippines. The data center company generated $4.3 billion in total revenue in its fiscal year 2018.

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