Harland Clarke Holdings Corp., a leading provider of best-in-class integrated payment solutions and marketing services, and Valassis, a leader in intelligent media delivery, announced that they have entered into a definitive merger agreement under which Harland Clarke Holdings will acquire Valassis.
Under the terms of the agreement, Harland Clarke Holdings, a wholly owned subsidiary of MacAndrews & Forbes Holdings Inc., will acquire all of the outstanding shares of Valassis for $34.04 per share in cash, representing a transaction value of approximately $1.84 billion. The transaction, which was unanimously approved by both the Valassis and Harland Clarke Holdings Boards of Directors, will be effected through a tender offer by a subsidiary of Harland Clarke Holdings for all of the shares of Valassis, followed by a merger of the acquisition subsidiary with and into Valassis.
The combination of Harland Clarke Holdings Corp. and Valassis will create a leader in the transaction services, media delivery services, consumer and business direct and education solutions industries with approximately $3.3 billion in combined revenues. The combined entity will have deep and tenured customer relationships with the largest financial, consumer products and retail institutions worldwide, offering them a robust portfolio of innovative products and services.
“The acquisition of Valassis is transformational for Harland Clarke Holdings, enabling us to further diversify our portfolio and expand our client base of more than 15,000 client accounts,” said Chuck Dawson, CEO of Harland Clarke Holdings Corp. “We respect Valassis’ proven ability to effectively and intelligently deliver media campaigns for our country’s largest advertisers and marketers. This is a strong complement to Harland Clarke Holdings’ capabilities in managing customer relationships for the world’s largest financial institutions, the most respected big-box retailers, as well as educational and governmental organizations worldwide. This acquisition will leverage each company’s respective best practices and result in significant operating efficiencies to provide even more effective services to our world-class global customer base.”
“After careful analysis and evaluation of a range of strategic and value-enhancing opportunities, our Board of Directors has determined that this transaction is in the best interest of Valassis and our stockholders,” saidAlan F. Schultz, non-executive chairman of the Valassis Board of Directors. “The transaction providesValassis stockholders with a significant and immediate cash premium for their shares.”
“Under Harland Clarke Holdings, we expect to create a company that is stronger than our individual businesses, which will allow us to pursue our vision of intelligent media delivery while continuing to strengthen our company’s award-winning culture,” Rob Mason, president and CEO of Valassis, said. “Harland Clarke Holdings is the right owner for Valassis and has the expertise and resources to accelerate our continued evolution and innovation that will benefit our associates and Valassis’ more than 15,000 clients.”
Harland Clarke Holdings will finance the acquisition with cash on hand and new borrowings and has received committed financing from Credit Suisse, BofA Merrill Lynch and Citigroup Global Markets Inc. to complete the transaction.
Valassis’ Board of Directors has recommended that its stockholders tender their shares in the transaction. The transaction, which is expected to close in the first quarter of 2014 and after Valassis pays the previously announced Jan. 15, 2014 dividend, is subject to the satisfaction of customary closing conditions, including expiration or termination of the applicable waiting period under the Hart-Scott-Rodino Antitrust Improvements Act and the tender of the majority of shares of Valassis stock.
As a result of the tender offer for the Valassis shares and the merger, Valassis will become a privately-held, wholly owned subsidiary of Harland Clarke Holdings and its common stock will cease trading on the NYSE. Until the transaction is complete, both Valassis and Harland Clarke Holdings Corp. will continue to operate as separate companies.