30-Year Old Publishing Software Maker Quark Acquired By Private Equity Firm

Privately held Quark, which develops publishing software for professional designers and enterprises and is best known for its QuarkXPress (QXP) desktop publishing layout editor, has been acquired by Platinum Equity, a private equity firm that specializes in mergers and acquisitions.

Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed. Brian Wall, the partner at Platinum Equity who led the team pursuing the purchase, says the PE firm has already kick-started a process focused on transitioning Quark to new ownership.

Based in Denver, Colorado, Quark provides a set of software applications that enable the creation, management, publication, and delivery of content across a variety of media including print, email, web, social media, as well as e-readers, tablets and mobile devices. Its main rival is Adobe.

The company was founded under the name “Quark Engineering” in 1981. Quark was previously owned by the Ebrahimi family, which acquired it from founder Tim Gill in 2000.

Platinum Equity was founded in 1995 by billionaire (and Detroit Pistons owner) Tom Gores, and has since completed more than 115 acquisitions. The Los Angeles firm owns companies like The San Diego Union-Tribune, U.S. Robotics, Vanguard Networks, Canvas Systems and MegaPath.