British information business Informa announces £1.2bn takeover of US rival Penton

William Turvill
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Informa's share price was up more than two per cent after the deal was announced (Source: Getty)

Business information group Informa today agreed a £1.2bn deal to take over a US rival.

Informa’s share price was up more than two per cent to 710p at the time of writing following the announced takeover of Penton.

15 September 2016 @ 10:00amInforma (INF)

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The business publisher said the acquisition was part of its “growth acceleration plan”.

Chief executive Stephen Carter said:

Following extensive and exclusive talks with Penton's owners and management, today's announcement signals the next step in [the plan], underlining our commitment to accelerated growth and international scale whilst delivering attractive returns for our shareholders.

The opportunity created through the combination of Informa and Penton balances our portfolio and increases our scale and reach, further improving the predictability and sustainability of our growth performance and cash generation.

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Informa has five divisions in its business: academic publishing, business intelligence, global exhibitions, knowledge and networking and global support.

It publishes 282-year-old shipping industry news title Lloyd’s List.

The deal was funded through both debt and equity, including a £715m underwritten rights issue.

The deal is expected to close in November, Informa said in a statement yesterday.

Analysts approve

The deal went down well among media analysts in the UK.

“This is a good deal for Informa,” Liberum media analyst Ian Whittaker said in a note yesterday.

“Completed at an attractive valuation, it gives them added scale, they increase their proportion of exhibitions revenues whilst increasing their exposure to the growing US market.”

Shore Capital analysts said: “On a first pass basis we are encouraged by this significant step in the advancement of Informa’s growth acceleration plan and by the fact that in addition to expanding its presence in the US, improving the balance of its portfolio and its scale within the exhibitions and information market as a whole, this deal is expected to enhance earnings (pre synergies) during its first full year of ownership.”

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