European law firm Fieldfisher has advised British automotive manual publisher Haynes Publish Group P.L.C. on its acquisition by France-headquartered Infopro Digital Limited for £114.5 million.
Haynes is best known for its iconic car manuals and three years ago shifted its focus to digital products and its Haynespro corporate offering.
Infopro is a leading French publisher of B2B information and owns several brands across Europe in the automotive aftermarket, as well as other industries including construction and retail and a data analytics division.
The deal, which marks the first time Somerset-based Haynes will come under foreign ownership since it was founded 60 years ago, is intended to support the company's growth and development in its key automotive markets.
The acquisition is the third takeover of a London-listed company Fieldfisher has advised on in the past six months, having assisted with the takeovers of data analysis company StatPro Group plc by US-based Confluence Technologies, Inc. for £161 million, and plastics manufacturer Synnovia by Cayman Islands-incorporated The Barker Partnership for £49 million, both in October 2019.
George Cotter, who led the Fieldfisher team advising Haynes, said:
"We were pleased to have assisted on this successful takeover deal for our client, which is one of the most recognised names in its field.
"We are also encouraged that this is the third such deal the firm has been engaged to advise on in the past six months, given that there were only 66 takeovers of listed UK companies in 2019.
"This indicates that UK-listed targets continue to be attractive targets, especially for overseas acquirers.
"Our experience in this area, as well as our reputation as a leading legal adviser to UK-quoted companies, continues to recommend us to clients looking to complete transformational deals."
Under the terms of the recommended cash offer published on 2 March, Infopro Digital will pay 700p per share for the entire issued and to be issued ordinary share capital of Haynes, to be effected by a scheme of arrangement under Part 26 of the Companies Act 2006.
The scheme requires, among other things, the approval of the requisite majorities of scheme shareholders at the court meeting and the passing of the special resolution by Haynes Shareholders at the general meeting to be held at Fieldfisher's London office on 25 March 2020.
Fieldfisher is an enterprising European law firm built around people. We have market-leading practices in our four key sectors of energy and natural resources, technology, financial services and life sciences.
Our equity capital markets team had another successful year in 2019, advising 40 AIM-quoted companies and working extensively with NOMADs and brokers on a large number of transactions.
Perfect Information's ECMi Report for 2019 ranked us as the number one AIM legal adviser by volume of deals as well as fourth by value of transactions.
Our network spans over 1500 people across 25 international offices, all of which offer clients highly commercial, pragmatic advice.
We are based in Belgium, China, France, Germany, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Ireland, Spain, the UK and the US.
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