The attempt to buy the German online classifieds specialist Scout24 by Hellman & Friedman funds and Blackstone is a failure. They failed to raise 50% of shares. As a reminder, Scout24 is a Munich-based holding company that manages several online service companies in Europe.
A substantial offer
This offer at 46 euros per share valued Scout24 at 5.7 billion euros, including debt. The funds raised commitments for only 42.8% of Scout24’s capital and failed to meet the threshold for successful bid.
The action of Scout24 lost more than 5% to 43.44 euros in the middle of the day on the Frankfurt Stock Exchange.
Although favorable to the proposal of Hellman & Friedman and Blackstone, Tobias Hartmann, CEO of Scout24, said he respected the decision of the shareholders, which he interpreted as “a vote of confidence in the future of the company and in its leaders “.
Scout24 had rejected in January a first proposal to 43.50 euros per share, which had led the contenders to improve their offer the following month. Some analysts, however, found it still too weak.
Hellman & Friedman has already owned Scout24, which broadcasts real estate listings in Germany and cars across Europe. The fund acquired the majority stake in Deutsche Telekom in 2013 and then floated the company in 2015.