Torstar Shares Trapped on TSX After Receiving Competing Takeover Offer for Press Company

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A second bid from the Torstar Corp. newspaper publishing empire was born, which would value the company 14% more than the previous offer.Torstar Corp. confirmed on Thursday that a second offer to purchase the company has been made, and the company’s board of directors is currently examining the unsolicited offer by an anonymous group of private investors.

Torstar “is engaged in discussions and negotiations with the new offeror regarding its non-binding proposal,” the company said in a press release.

The company did not specify who was making the offer, but the Globe and Mail initially reported that the offer came from the Proud Brothers, Matthew and Tyler, who made money in the tech sector. .

The new offer would offer 72 cents per share to buy the company. This would value the company at $ 58 million, better than the offer of 63 cents in May from the company Nordstar of the Bitove and Rivett families, which valued the company at $ 52 million.

Like many newspapers, the owner of the Toronto Star, the Hamilton Spectator and 70 other publications across Canada has experienced a steep drop in paid circulation and advertising revenue, and a corresponding increase in digital output cannot compensate for it.

The company earned $ 479 million in 2019, down $ 64.4 million or 12% from 2018 levels, and spent $ 51 million more than it earned, according to his last income.

But the company has $ 42 million in cash and no debt, making it an attractive acquisition even beyond the core business.

The company’s shares were halted Thursday morning on the Toronto Stock Exchange, regulators citing “pending news” as the reason for the halt.

Torstar shareholders are expected to vote on whether or not to accept the original NordStar offer on July 21.

Torstar’s board of directors says it still recommends that shareholders vote for the NordStar deal, pending discussions they have with those who made the new offer.

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