UBM agrees to acquire Advanstar for $972M

UPDATE November 6, 2014: A copy of the prospectus dated 6 November 2014 relating to the Rights Issue associated with UBM’s proposed Acquisition of VSS-AHC Consolidated Holdings Corp. (Advanstar Communications) is available here. It can also be read at www.morningstar.co.uk/uk/NSM.

ORIGINAL ARTICLE October 3, 2014: UBM has agreed to buy Advanstar Communications for $972 million (£599 million) in cash.

Advanstar’s CEO, Joe Loggia, will continue to manage the Advanstar business within UBM and will report directly to UBM CEO Tim Cobbold for a transitional period.

UBM will launch a new financing package to pay for the deal comprising of a $914 million (£563 million) Rights Issue and a new US$100 million UBM bridge facility.

advanstar“This is a great acquisition for UBM and its shareholders.” Commented Tim Cobbold, Chief Executive Officer of UBM, “In addition to being financially attractive, it strengthens UBM’s core events business while balancing and complementing UBM’s strong events portfolio in emerging markets. UBM will become the largest events organiser in the US – the biggest events market in the world. Advanstar gives UBM a portfolio of high quality, large scale `must-attend’ events which serve growing markets, particularly the US fashion industry, a new vertical for UBM.”

The Wall Street Journalist is reporting that some analysts have speculated UBM will sell its news release business PR Newswire, which would turn UBM into a company almost fully focused on events.

Previous Fusion DigiNet reporting

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UBM in advanced talks to acquire Advanstar

UBMUBM is in advanced talks to acquire Advanstar. Reuters is reporting that UBM are paying around $900M for the privately held U.S. trade show organiser.

Advanstar generates roughly $95 million in earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation. It has has a portfolio of 54 trade shows, 100 conferences, 30 publications, and almost 200 electronic products and Web sites, as well as educational and direct marketing products and services. Advanstar has approximately 600 employees and currently operates from multiple offices in North America and Europe.

A UBM statement confirming the talks said, “UBM plc notes recent market speculation concerning a potential acquisition of advanstarAdvanstar by UBM. UBM confirms that it is involved in discussions which may, or may not, lead to a transaction. A further announcement will be made in due course, if appropriate.”

This would be the first large acquisition for UBM under its new CEO Tim Cobbold, who started at the company earlier this year after leaving British banknote printer De La Rue.

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