Endeavor Group Holdings Goes Private in Landmark $13 Bln Deal

BATS:EDR   Endeavor Group Holdings, Inc.
Endeavor Group Holdings ( EDR ), the parent company of talent agency WME and combat sports powerhouse TKO Group, is set to go private in what is being hailed as the largest privatization in the history of the industry.

Led by private equity firm Silver Lake Capital, the acquisition marks a pivotal moment for Endeavor, valuing the company at a staggering $13 billion in equity value. With the enterprise value nearly doubling when factoring in the TKO interest, this deal underscores the confidence and conviction of investors in Endeavor's potential.

Shareholders are set to receive $27.50 in cash for each share, representing a significant premium over Monday's closing price and a remarkable 55% increase from last October's figures. This substantial offer reflects the unwavering belief in Endeavor's intrinsic value and growth prospects.

The decision to go private comes after a mixed three-year stint for Endeavor as a public company. Despite initial anticipation surrounding its IPO prior to the onset of the Covid pandemic, the company faced challenges that hindered its ability to realize its full potential in the public market. However, this move to privatize signals a new chapter for Endeavor, allowing it to refocus its efforts and chart a course towards sustained growth and success.

Rumors of privatization had been circulating in recent months, fueled in part by TKO's public stock debut last fall. Under the terms of the deal, Silver Lake will acquire 100% of the outstanding shares it does not currently own, with participation from prominent investors including the United Arab Emirates sovereign wealth fund Mubadala, Michael Dell's DFO Management, and private equity firm Lexington Partners.

CEO Ari Emanuel expressed confidence in Silver Lake's backing, emphasizing its pivotal role in Endeavor's evolution since 2012. He lauded the privatization as a means to maximize value for all shareholders and underscored management's commitment to unlocking growth opportunities as a private entity.

Endeavor's journey to this moment has been characterized by strategic acquisitions and diversification, with investments in properties like IMG, Professional Bull Riders, and the complete acquisition of UFC in 2021. While navigating the complexities of the market, the company has emerged stronger and more resilient, culminating in this landmark privatization deal.

It's worth noting that TKO Group Holdings will remain publicly traded, with Endeavor's decision to go private signaling a strategic shift in focus and direction. As the industry watches with bated breath, Endeavor's ascent into private ownership marks a new chapter in its illustrious history—one defined by innovation, resilience, and unwavering commitment to success.

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