Francisco Partners — which manages more than $30bn in assets — is to make a “significant equity investment” in shipping software firm Veson Nautical.

The US technology investment group will invest an unspecified amount in Veson, which has 18,000 users of its maritime trading platform, to accelerate its organic growth and target acquisitions.

Veson, which claims to be the market leader in digital systems for shipping commerce, was set up in 1979, when it created the first automatic port-to-port distance tables.