OOH bidding war explodes as APN ups Adshel bid to $540 million

By Luke Anisimoff | 22 June 2018

APN Outdoor Group Limited has submitted a revised proposal to acquire Adshel outright for the Australian and New Zealand territories, with a bid of $540 million. This is up from their previous offer of $500 million last month, following oOh!Media's earlier bid of $470 million.

Earlier this week, international advertiser JCDecaux put forward a $1.1 billion offer to acquire APN.

APN see the acquisition of HT&E Limited-owned Adshel's street furniture assets as a strategic expansion when combined with their transit and billboard platforms.

The $540 million offer comprises of 54.1 million shares valued at $310 million, as well as $230 million in cash, funded by incremental new debt.

This motion comes as the City of Sydney's $500 million street furniture contract is subject to tender.

APN expect cost savings of $15 million per annum if the deal gets the greenlight.

APN chief executive officer and managing director, James Warbuton, sees the venture as a way to “deliver new solutions and ideas to our advertisers and generate long-term, substantial growth for our shareholders”.

“There is opportunity for us to use our expertise in large-scale digital developments to support the roll-out of digital across Adshel's street furniture format, particularly in Australia,” Warbuton said.

“We expect this would enable us to bring digital to a broader range of advertisers and complement our existing product offering to those advertisers.

“The combination of Adshel and APN Outdoor also represents an opportunity to realise meaningful cost synergies through rationalisation of duplication across management, sales and back-office functions.”

Meanwhile, JCDecaux's indicative and non-binding proposal to acquire APN is still in limbo, though the APN board has commenced an assessment process.

The board has advised shareholders not to take any action as there is “no certainty” of the transaction taking place.

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