Corporate Financier’s Notes by Aivars Jurcans
Done! And Done
eToro, an Israeli-based online broker, has agreed to go public at a USD 10.4 billion valuation after merging with Fintech Acquisition Corp V, a special purpose acquisition company set up by Betsy Cohen. eToro has more than 20 million registered users, having added more than 5 million in 2020.
Credit Agricole Italia has agreed to buy a 5.38% stake in Creval, an Italian lender, from Algebris, an investment fund, even if its takeover bid for the bank falls through.
Robinhood, an online brokerage, has agreed to buy Binc, a recruiting firm with more than 80 employees, for an undisclosed sum.
QSuper and Sunsuper, two Australian pension funds, have agreed to merge. The combined entity would manage USD 156 billion in retirement money for 2 million Australians, or 1/6 of the country’s workforce.
Warburg Pincus, a private equity firm, has agreed to acquire “a minority stake” representing a ”mid-to-high teens” percentage equity ownership in Edelman Financial Engines, an investment advisory services provider, in a deal valuing the company at USD 7.3 billion, including debt.
Deals On The Table
HSBC is said to have entered “final negotiations” to sell its French retail banking business (comprising 270 branches) to Cerberus, a private equity business.
Generali, an Italian insurer, is said to be considering an acquisition in Russia worth about EUR 2 billion. VTB Insurance, Rosgosstrakh and RESO-Garantia have been mentioned as potential targets. Generali already holds a 38.5% stake in Ingosstrakh, another major Russian insurer, which it acquired in 2013.
PPF Group, controlled by Petr Kellner (a Czech billionaire), has agreed to pay USD 515 million for shares submitted by Moneta, a Czech lender, owners during a recent tender offer. Subject to the central bank’s approval, this will increase Kellner’s stake to just over 28%. PPF is expected to combine its Air Bank and “affiliated Czech financial assets” with Moneta to create a large retail bank.
BNP Paribas is said to have proposed buying out the remaining 50% stake in Exane, an investment company, that it does not already own. Exane generated EUR 21.9 million of net profit in 2019. The terms of proposed acquisition were not disclosed.
Thanks, But No Deal
Apollo Global Management, a US private equity group, has ended talks with the administrators of Greensill, a British financing company. Apollo was negotiating a USD 60 million acquisition of Greensill’s operating assets via Athene, its insurance arm.
Coinbase Global, a US cryptocurrency exchange, is said to have been valued at around USD 68 billion in a recent private market transaction.
Trustly, a Swedish payments group, is said to be preparing for an IPO valuing the company in excess of EUR 9 billion (or, some 50x times sales). It has reported an adjusted ebitda margin of 46%.
Stripe, a San Francisco online payment processing company, has closed a private funding round that values it at about USD 95 billion. It is estimated that the company is being valued at about 11x times its trailing sales, a lower multiple than fintech companies like PayPal, Square and Adyen.
Flywire, a payments processor focused on education, healthcare and travel sectors, is said to be considering an initial public offering that could value the firm at around USD 3 billion.
Deals involving larger US wealth managers in 2020 were priced at an enterprise value to underlying earnings multiple of more than 12x times, according to Piper Sandler. For smaller wealth managers the equivalent multiple averaged between 8x and 9x times underlying earnings.
A Thought Worth Noting
“Markets across the board are expensive today and that is pinned on central bank support. So this whole market is very, very sensitive to changes in central bank policy.”
Hugh Gimber, strategist, JPMorgan Asset Management
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