The Carlyle Group acquires visual effects software developer The Foundry

Alternative asset manager, The Carlyle Group, has acquired the visual effects software developer, The Foundry, from Advent Venture Partners and “other stakeholders”. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

London-headquartered The Foundry provides technology to major feature film studios and post production houses in the US and UK, while its software been has used in the production of award-winning and nominated movies such as Avatar, Tron: Legacy, Alice in Wonderland, The King’s Speech, 127 Hours and Black Swan.

Despite the Carlyle acquisition, The Foundry’s founders and management team will retain a “significant minority stake” and stay on to help drive innovation. Meanwhile Carlyle themselves are said to be supporting The Foundry’s expansion, while the investment will “facilitate the company’s diversification into other adjacent market arenas as the product range continues to evolve and grow.”

Equity for this investment comes from Carlyle Europe Technology Partners (CETP) II, a €530 million fund that closed in November 2008.

The Foundry employs around staff 100 and revenue was £14.9 million in 2010. Its 4,000-strong customer base includes The Moving Picture Company (MPC), Prime Focus, Dreamworks, Industrial Light and Magic (ILM), Framestore, Cinesite and Double Negative .