Deal Announcement

Refinitiv

PriestleySoundy is advising the international (including UK and US Managers) Senior Management Team of Refinitiv in connection with the proposed £22bn (US $27bn) acquisition of their business by The London Stock Exchange Group (LSEG).  The transaction, which is conditional on LSEG shareholder and regulatory approval, is expected to close in the second half of 2020.

LSEG will pay for the purchase by issuing US $14.5bn in new shares and assuming US $12.5bn of existing debt.  The all-share deal will turn Refinitiv’s owners, which include Blackstone (and consortium partners Canada Pension Plan Investment Board and GIC) and Thomson Reuters, into LSEG’s biggest shareholders.  Together, they will own 37% of its shares and control just under 30% of its voting rights.

The transaction is expected to transform LSEG into a British powerhouse to rival Michael Bloomberg’s financial data empire, creating a leading UK-headquartered, global financial markets infrastructure provider with a leading data and analytics business, significant capital markets capabilities across multiple asset classes, and a broad post-trade offering, well positioned for future growth in a fast evolving landscape.

The purchase comes less than a year after Thomson Reuters sold a majority stake in Refinitiv to the Blackstone-led consortium (which reportedly has doubled its money in ten months).  Mark Soundy and Sarah Priestley also advised the Senior Management Team of Refinitiv in connection with that transaction.

Founded in 1985, Blackstone is one of the world’s leading investment firms with nearly 2,500 employees in 24 offices worldwide.  Its portfolio companies employ over 400,000 people across the globe.

Thomson Reuters is a Canadian-headquartered multinational mass media and information firm, operating in more than 100 countries with more than 45,000 employees.

Blackstone is being advised by Simpson Thacher, Macfarlanes and Maples & Calder.  Thomson Reuters is being advised by Wachtell Lipton, Allen & Overy and Torys.  LSEG is being advised by Freshfields.

1st August 2019

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