Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Informa UBM Talks Collapse

After the close of the markets in the UK yesterday, UBM announced it had broken off talks about an all stock merger with Informa. Informa's shares have declined 7% this morning even though new potential buyers have emerged. Reuters cites a Times report suggesting Carlyle is behind a new bid but other parties Cinven, Apax, Candover are also potential entrants. At this point the most likely buyer would be Springer which is owned by Candover and Cinven. From Reuters:
A private equity consortium led by Providence is behind the latest bid approach to British media group Informa (INF.L: Quote, Profile, Research), media reports said on Wednesday. The Times newspaper, without citing sources, said that private equity firm Carlyle was part of the consortium and that talks were at an early stage.

Analysts must also be wondering what type of deal UBM would do if this one wasn't to its liking. The company has remained on the sidelines for much of the media buying frenzy of the past several years. It has no debt to speak off but it remains relatively small. Under what circumstances would they consider expanding the company?

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