Tegna Confirms Two Acquisition Offers Withdrawn Amid Coronavirus Upheaval
Tegna confirmed Sunday that two suitors for the station group have not too long ago withdrawn acquisition presents, citing the upheaval within the broader market attributable to the coronavirus disaster.
Tegna’s assertion is the corporate’s first acknowledgement that it has obtained 4 unsolicited acquisition presents in latest weeks. Two of these have since been withdrawn whereas the opposite two have but to progress within the due diligence course of, nor have the bidders suggested Tegna leaders on financing specifics, in accordance with Tegna.
The suitors who’ve bowed out are believed to be Atlanta-based Grey Tv, which fielded a cash-and-stock provide valuing Tegna at $20 a share, or about $8.5 billion earlier this month. Non-public fairness large Apollo World Administration adopted with an all-cash provide in the identical vary. Tegna owns 62 network-affiliated TV stations serving 51 giant and mid-sized markets.
After the historic losses in U.S. equities markets over the previous three weeks, Tegna shares have fallen to $13.21 as of the shut of buying and selling on Friday. The inventory was within the $16-$17 vary on the time the wave of bids surfaced.
Along with Grey and Apollo, entrepreneur Byron Allen is alleged to have fielded an all-cash provide together with spiritual broadcast group Trinity in partnership with Phoenix-based non-public fairness agency Najafi Corporations. Najafi and Trinity on March 17 introduced they’d notified Tegna’s board of administrators of its intent to make an all-cash provide at $20 a share.
COPYRIGHT_BP: Published on https://bingepost.com/tegna-confirms-two-acquisition-offers-withdrawn-amid-coronavirus-upheaval/78494/ by Cecilia Jones on 2020-03-30T00:15:39.000Z
Tegna administration, led by president-CEO Dave Lougee, has been below strain from activist shareholder Soo Kim of funding agency Commonplace Normal to be extra lively at a time of continued consolidation of native TV station belongings. Tegna is among the final sizable collections of Huge four associates up for grabs as a pure-play broadcaster.
Sunday’s assertion marked Tegna’s first formal acknowledgement of acquisition exercise because the mating dances started final month.
“As has been extensively reported, Tegna has obtained 4 unsolicited acquisition proposals in latest weeks,” Tegna mentioned in a press release. “Tegna and its advisors engaged considerably with two of those events and offered them in depth private due diligence info. These two events made their proposals shortly earlier than the latest market dislocation as a result of COVID-19 pandemic and each subsequently knowledgeable Tegna that they had been ceasing discussions. The opposite two events haven’t signed confidentiality agreements to allow due diligence and haven’t delivered any info on financing sources.”
Lougee mentioned in a press release that the corporate’s speedy focus is on stabilizing enterprise amid the financial shock of the enterprise clampdown attributable to aggressive social distancing measures.
“Like each different firm, Tegna is working in uncharted waters as a consequence of COVID-19 as we deal with guaranteeing the well being and security of our staff whereas persevering with to create and protect worth,” Lougee mentioned. “Excessive-quality native information has by no means been extra necessary, and we’re lucky to have important contractual subscription revenues and a powerful stability sheet with minimal near-term debt maturities. We’re working by means of the present challenges raised by COVID-19 and are very assured that our long-term progress drivers stay intact.”
Commonplace Normal has proposed an alternate slate of 5 administrators to affix the Tegna board as a part of its effort to push the corporate to behave on the M&A entrance. Tegna administration has strongly refuted Commonplace Normal’s criticisms and pointed to Kim’s blended monitor document as an investor.
Tegna board chairman Howard Elias addressed the strain to contemplate options for the corporate — one thing that absolutely has been halted given the financial turmoil.
“Along with our deal with executing our standalone plan, the Tegna board and administration have meaningfully engaged with third events to discover alternatives to create worth,” Elias mentioned in a press release. “The board has been, and stays, keen to contemplate transactions that create compelling worth, and our focus now could be on serving to administration navigate by means of an unprecedented setting.”