Boulder, Colo., nestled at the base of the Rocky Mountains, is not synonymous with tech investment.
The Zayo Group buyout is just one of many deals happening in America’s lesser-known tech-driven cities. Just 25 miles southeast of Boulder, the Denver metropolitan area has seen a large influx of tech-driven PE buyouts, and the region is not alone. Miami, better known for its pristine beaches and nightlife, has also seen a significant uptick in tech buyout deals.
With tech quickly becoming a ubiquitous feature of the economy, private equity dealmakers are breaking geographic norms established over the past decade and looking beyond classically known tech bubbles such as Silicon Valley and New York. Cities like Denver and Miami are particularly indicative of this trend.
According to PitchBook data analyzing two five-year periods (2011-2016 vs. 2016-2021), Denver saw a more than 70% increase in private equity deals, with its deal count rising to 176 from 103, while Miami saw a deal count inflate to 139 from 108, representing nearly a 30% increase. The two metropolitan areas have seen a larger influx in tech buyout deals than almost any other US metropolitan region.
“The numbers show two things,” said Rebecca Springer, a private equity analyst at PitchBook. “That PE investment in tech has grown significantly over the past decade or so, and that Denver and Miami are growing tech hubs and are therefore offering more tech companies for PE to invest in.”
Other metropolitan areas seeing a rise in tech buyouts over the last five years include Raleigh, N.C., Alpharetta, Ga. Birmingham, Ala., and St. Louis, according to PitchBook data