The French ChapsVision in the footsteps of Palantir

Posted on September 25, 2022 at 2:27 PMUpdated on September 25, 2022 at 14:28

Over the past three years, serial entrepreneur Olivier Dellenbach has been building stone by stone the European alternative to the American big data giant Palantir. With this ninth acquisition, the data analysis expert ChapsVision changes scale this time: it doubles its size to 100 million euros in turnover with the acquisition of Deveryware, a specialist in legal interception and geolocation for the interior and justice ministries.

By the way, the management team receives more than 100 million euros from Tikehau and Bpifrance to finance this operation and close new ones. “After consolidating ourselves in France, our territory is naturally Europe”, says Olivier Dellenbach. Starting next year, we want to conclude a series of acquisitions on similar technologies sold to state customers that only domestic players are authorized to offer, or complementary data analysis technologies.”

“Sovereign services are a very important market whose analysis needs continue to grow,” adds the founder, who maintains control with the management team.

Olivier Dellenbach, who among other things sold eFront, his former private equity research firm, to US giant BlackRock for $1.5bn, is not on his first try. With Bertin IT, ChapsVision has acquired a defense service provider for open source intelligence processing and classified information partitioning. In January it also bought Elektron, a European contract judicial interception expert in the field of cyber defense from the Nexa Technologies group involved in the sale of offensive tools.

Other acquisitions in sight in Europe

Profitable, with more than 600 major client accounts, including companies, ChapVision and its 500 employees aim to double in size again in two years to reach €250 million in turnover.

And it was on the starting line to win OTDH, the Interior Ministry contest that ultimately aims to replace the American big data giant Palantir, the analysis provider chosen as an emergency by the DGSI after the 2015 attacks and financed by the CIA In-Q-Tel Fund. The contract had been renewed for more than three years in 2019 in the absence of the sovereign solution requested by the State services. The Thales-Atos alliance and Dassault Systèmes-backed social media data analytics start-up Bloom are in the running.

“We see a lot of companies presenting themselves as the future European Palantir,” says Quentin Besnard, CEO of Tikehau Ace Capital. “ChapsVision allied with Deveryware is one of the most credible to create an alternative in Europe for data analysis”, adds the manager of the investment company specialized in cyber, aeronautics and defense and also a shareholder of companies such as Tehtris founded by former employees of DGSE or Preligens in AI for intelligence services.

Several suitors have already tried to supplant Palantir in the national territory, but the slope was too steep for them. Flaminem, which was developing big data software billed as Palantir’s future competitor, had to “pivot” to fully turn to the anti-fraud market for banks.

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