MacDonald Dettweiler and Associates, better known as MDA and owner of the UK conveyancing search giant SearchFlow, has sold its information products division to TPG Capital, a global private investment company.

Along with SearchFlow, a Legal Futures Associate, the sale includes MDA Hub Limited, which manages the infrastructure and payment processes for NLIS, the national electronic gateway through which conveyancers access electronic search information.

SearchFlow is one of two current NLIS ‘channels’ that compete to provide search services and claims around 80% of the total UK electronic search market

Subject to regulatory approval, the deal is expected to be completed in early 2011.

Also included in the sale is xit2, an online property data network which enables lenders and other clients to send secure instructions to suppliers, including conveyancers; the Irish ancillary legal services provider, Rochford Brady Group; and the Scottish private search firm Millar & Bryce.

TPG Capital has $47 billion of capital under management and says its investment philosophy is to “create value by investing in change – change created by industry trends, economic cycles or specific company circumstances”.

Stuart Pearce, group managing director for MDA Information Products, said: “TPG is a world class investment company with deep skill sets and experience that will help us achieve our ambitious plans for growth over the next few years.”

TPG Capital partner, Bryan Taylor, said: “MDA and the respective management teams have done an excellent job growing these companies. The investment fits very well within our broader data services portfolio.”

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