Welsh Carson takes majority stake in Revel, Scott Betts replaces Falzone as CEO

After many months of speculation about a potential acquisition by IBM or private equity firms, today, finally some official news from point-of-sale payments company Revel Systems. The company announced that Welsh, Carson, Anderson and Stowe (WCAS) has led a large growth round in the company that will make it the company’s majority shareholder. Alongside that, the company’s co-founder Lisa Falzone has stepped down as CEO. She is getting replaced by Scott Betts, a former CEO of Global Cash Access who has also worked at First Data and Procter & Gamble. His appointment takes effect today.

“I am very excited to join the Revel team and continue Lisa’s and Chris’ great work in building and delivering an outstanding solution and superior business value to our clients,” said Betts in a statement.

We are asking Revel for more details about the size of this round — which was hinted at in this FTC filing in January, but without any financial details. (Revel would not comment on the filing at the time.) WCAS led Revel’s $100 million Series C in 2014 (when it was focused still on an IPO). Before this round announced today, Revel had raised $130 million in total. In 2015, at its last fundraise, the company was valued at around $540 million.

It sounds like Falzone’s departure as CEO is directly linked to the investment and is a sign of how the PE firm — which focuses on tech and healthcare investments — is hoping to firm up the business either for a bigger tech exit, with potentially more details with large brands along the way.

“During the past two years, Revel has driven significant product innovation, gained market traction in key industry verticals, recruited terrific talent to the Revel team, and demonstrated strong client traction and growth,” said Eric J. Lee, General Partner at WCAS, in a statement. “Revel’s founders have shown great vision and determination in building the Company. Looking forward, we believe that there is significant market potential for Revel’s leading cloud-based POS solution, and WCAS is excited to fund and catalyze this next phase of Revel’s growth and success.”

We’re asking what role, if any, Falzone will take but it looks like she is exiting altogether.

“Revel’s mission has always been to make business owners’ and operators’ lives easier and more efficient – spurring entrepreneurship and leading the industry with excellent features and functionality. Keeping customers and their success at the forefront will always be core to the organization,” she said in a statement.

“Revel is on a great trajectory. Lisa and I look forward to watching the company grow and evolve,” added Chris Ciabarra, Revel’s other co-founder.

Revel competes against companies like Square but also PayPal, First Data and many more in offering a point-of-sale solution that small and larger business owners can run from an iPad app — bypassing a lot of legacy and costly specialised equipment and necessary deals with a longer chain of banking partners. It targets restaurants, retailer and enterprises and also offers payroll, inventory and CRM services. Customers include Shell, Cinnabon, Estee Lauder, Tully’s, Smoothie King and Stanford University.