Phoenix, Ariz.-based electronics distributor Avnet Inc. (NYSE: AVT) offered to acquire Britain’s Premier Farnell Plc (LSE: PFL) in an all-cash offer of £1.85 per share representing an equity value of £691 million ($907 million) and a 12.1% premium over a previous offer of £1.65 per share by Switzerland’s Daetwyler Holding AG (SWX: DAE) made in mid-June before the UK’s Brexit vote.
Avnet’s buyout offer is taking advantage of the sharp decline of the British pound vis–à–vis the US dollar after the June 23 Brexit referendum.
The move comes after other large recent foreign corporate buyouts of British companies after Brexit. Two weeks ago, Japanese telecommunications giant SoftBank Group Corp. (TYO: 9984) agreed to acquire Cambridge, UK-based ARM Holdings plc (LSE: ARM; NASDAQ: ARMH), whose microchips are used in the iPhone and more than 95% of all smartphones, for £24.3 billion ($32 billion).
A week earlier, Chinese conglomerate Dalian Wanda‘s AMC Entertainment (NYSE: AMC), agreed to acquire London-based Odeon & UCI Cinemas Group, the largest theatre exhibitor in Europe, from private equity firm Terra Firma, in a deal valued at £921 million.
“This acquisition will significantly strengthen Avnet’s digital footprint worldwide. The convergence of Premier Farnell’s innovative online services with Avnet’s world class supply chain will create customer service unparalleled in the industry,” said William Amelio, interim CEO of Avnet.
Bank of America Merrill Lynch acted as financial advisor and Gibson Dunn & Crutcher LLP acted as legal counsel to Avnet in connection with this transaction.
Avnet is one of the world’s largest global distributors of electronic components, computer and IT solutions, embedded technology and services, with revenues of $27.9 billion for the fiscal year 2015. The company was founded in New York in 1921, by Charles Avnet, a 33-year-old Russian immigrant, when he began buying surplus radio parts and reselling them.
Premier Farnell is a global distributor of electronic components and related products delivering engineering solutions to the electronic system design community utilizing multi-channel sales and marketing resources. Headquartered in Leeds, United Kingdom, Premier Farnell sells half of the low-cost Raspberry Pi mini computers distributed worldwide’
In March 2016, Premier Farnell completed the sale of Akron Brass for an enterprise value of $224.2 million, representing 8.8x FY15 EBITDA. Premier Farnell reported revenues from continuing operations of £903.9 million for the fiscal year ended January 31, 2016.
Premier Farnell withdrew its recommendation of the Daetwyler offer. Altdorf, Switzerland-based Daetwyler distributes more than 500,000 electronics products.