Consortium includes Elliott in advanced talks to buy Nielsen Holdings

Consortium includes Elliott in advanced talks to buy Nielsen Holdings

Divya

Economy

Being a consortium of private equity firms including Elliott Management Corp. Advanced talks to buy a TV rating company

Nielsen Holdings

NLSN 30.50%

PLC for about $15 billion including debt, according to people familiar with the matter.

People said funding talks with a number of banks are progressing and the takeover deal could be completed within weeks. There is no guarantee that there will be an agreement, as talks could collapse.

If there was one, it would be substantial. Nielsen’s market capitalization reached $6.2 billion Monday morning and what is known as the enterprise’s value is more than $11 billion, given its massive debt load of more than $5 billion.

Other details, including the likely price of the stock, cannot be known. Nielsen shares rose more than 30% Monday to $22.85 a share after the Wall Street Journal reported the talks.

For many years, Nielsen has been synonymous with measuring American television ratings, which provides audience ratings that networks use to sell commercial time and reassures advertisers that they got what they paid for. but it disassembled As broadcasting is gaining in strength and traditional broadcasting and cable TV are losing viewers. While the New York-based company has introduced streaming metrics in recent years, it is one of many players in the field.

As a result, Nielsen stock has not performed well. Closing on Friday at $17.51 ​​it was down from a high of more than $55 in 2016. They had been in a downtrend for several years when the arrival of the pandemic in early 2020 sent them lower. Although they regained some of their gains, they are still trading slightly lower than they were before Covid-19.

Elliott has owned a stake in Nielsen since 2018, when she was He invited the company to explore selling. Nielsen said it the following year That would separate from a portion of her business To create two separate public companies: Global Connect, a market analysis process that measures retail and consumer behavior, and the core media business.

In April 2020, Elliott entered into a settlement agreement with Nielsen in which the company agreed to add a director and form a board finance committee that would oversee strategic plans including dismissal. Elliott had approximately 13% of an economic interest in Nielsen at the time.

Global Connect was sold last year to private equity firm Advent International Corp. for nearly $3 billion and is now known as NielsenIQ.

Elliott is increasingly active in private equity, with his private equity arm, Evergreen Coast Capital Corp. , in January Agreement with the partner To buy a cloud computing company

Citrix Systems company

For $16.5 billion, including debt. This was the latest in a recent string of large leveraged buyouts as private equity firms look to use the huge amounts of cash they have accumulated.

Nielsen was previously acquired in 2006 by a group of private equity firms that included

Black stone company ,

Carlisle Group company ,

KKR

& Co. and Thomas H. Lee Partners L.P.. He. She It was released to the public back in 2011.

In the event of the transaction being completed, this may come as the volume of the merger in general slows due to market volatility and Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. Global merger activity is down about 30% this year compared to the same period in 2021, with deals worth nearly $776 billion announced, according to Dealogic.

write to Dana Similuca at d[email protected] and Cara Lombardo at [email protected]

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