In the UK, digital transformation consultancy Kin + Carta has changed horses in its ongoing sale process, recommending that shareholders approve a new bid controlled by investment firm BC Partners, instead of earlier favoured offers from Apax Partners.
Kin and Carta was established five years ago when UK marketing services group St. Ives changed its name after disposing of its legacy printing and publishing businesses, focusing instead on digital services. Since then it has disposed of a number of MR and analytics-focused assets but acquired others, including Edinburgh-based Forecast Data, last May.
In October last year the company looked set to accept a bid from private equity advisory firm Apax Partners, in a deal valuing it at around £203 million, or 110p per ordinary share; and in December it recommended acceptance of an increased and final Apax-backed offer, equivalent to 120p per share. Since then, with the addition of another 10p a share, an offer from rival bidder - Ken Bidco Limited or 'Valtech', a company controlled indirectly by funds advised by BC Partners LLP - has won the backing of the Board. Apax confirmed today that it would not be increasing its second offer, and Kin + Carta shareholders will get to vote on the packages at a forthcoming General Meeting.
While Apax has been involved in many MR and analytics sector deals and bids from VNU in 2004 and GfK in 2008 to Kantar in 2019 - and in October agreed to buy consumer research unit WGSN from Ascential, BC Partners took a majority stake a year ago in New York and London-based Account Based Marketing (ABM) specialist Madison Logic.
Kin + Carta's Global CEO Kelly Manthey is pictured. Web site: www.kinandcarta.com .
All articles 2006-23 written and edited by Mel Crowther and/or Nick Thomas, 2024- by Nick Thomas, unless otherwise stated.