Nasdaq, Inc. (NASDAQ:NDAQ) agreed to acquire Marketwired LP, a leading global provider of news distribution services and analytics for communications professionals, from OMERS Private Equity, the private equity arm of the Ontario Municipal Employees Retirement System. Financial terms were not disclosed. Reuters reported in October that Marketwired could be worth as much as $200 million in a sale.
“We are extremely proud of our affiliation with Marketwired over the years,” said Michael Graham, senior managing director and head of North America, for OMERS PE. “Marketwired has been part of OPE since 2006 and has been a strong contributor to OMERS returns. The sale to Nasdaq is a logical step in the company’s evolution. We wish Adnan and his team continued success.”
Marketwired services over 8,500 clients, including Forbes 2000 companies, private corporations and public relations agencies. The acquisition is expected to further bolster Nasdaq’s position as a leading, global corporate services provider. Subject to customary conditions, the deal will be funded through a mix of debt and cash on hand and is expected to close in the first quarter of 2016.
Nasdaq’s corporate services clients will benefit from an enhanced experience by gaining access to Marketwired’s market-leading social media targeting tools and analytics. As the media landscape continues to expand globally, including tremendous growth of social media channels, the combined organization will be a leader in global distribution of news releases through Nasdaq’s world-class GlobeNewswire distribution capabilities and work-flow platform, as well as Marketwired’s leading offering of social media targeting and monitoring services.
“This transaction is a testament to our commitment to growing this business and delivering the most innovative communications tools and intelligence to our Corporate Solutions clients across the investor relations and public relations solutions suite,” said Adena Friedman, president and chief operating officer, Nasdaq. “As our clients’ needs continue to expand, we will be well-positioned to offer new tools, content, and services to meet their evolving IR and PR challenges and opportunities.”
The acquisition is expected to be accretive to Nasdaq’s non-GAAP earnings within twelve months of closing and should have no material impact on Nasdaq’s financial leverage or capital return strategy.
“There is a natural fit between the two organizations in terms of our long-term strategy and shared values based around innovation and customer centricity,” said Adnan Ahmed, president and CEO, Marketwired. “We are excited about the benefits this combination will provide to Marketwired clients through a broader global distribution network, a comprehensive end-to-end workflow solution, and improved customer service. We appreciate the support and partnership OMERS Private Equity offered throughout the life of their investment.”
Marketwired and Sysomos, a leader in social media analytics, separated in 2015. Sysomos will remain under OMERS PE’s ownership.
The transaction is expected to close in the first quarter of 2016, subject to customary conditions.
BMO Capital Markets served as financial advisor, and Morrison & Foerster and Stikeman Elliott acted as legal counsel to OMERS PE.
Nasdaq is a leading provider of trading, clearing, exchange technology, listing, information and public company services across six continents. Through its diverse portfolio of solutions, Nasdaq enables customers to plan, optimize and execute their business vision with confidence, using proven technologies that provide transparency and insight for navigating today’s global capital markets. As the creator of the world’s first electronic stock market, its technology powers more than 70 marketplaces in 50 countries, and 1 in 10 of the world’s securities transactions. Nasdaq is home to more than 3,700 listed companies with a market value of approximately $9.6 trillion and nearly 10,000 corporate clients.
Marketwired is a communications leader and partner of choice for marketing, public relations and investor relations professionals worldwide seeking premier news distribution and social communication solutions. For more than 30 years, the company has played a pivotal role in connecting newsmakers to news consumers by sharing market-moving, direct-from-source information on behalf of companies worldwide. The Marketwired team partners with thousands of customers to help them discover better ways to create and share their news with the people who influence their brands and impact their business.
OMERS Private Equity has been making private equity investments since 1987 on behalf of OMERS, one of Canada’s largest pension funds with net assets of CAD$72 billion. The company’s team manages over $6.5 billion of investments globally. OMERS PE’s investment strategy includes active ownership of a portfolio of industry-leading businesses across North America and Europe. The company has offices in Toronto, New York, London and Sydney.