Nielsen Offloads Its Global Connect Business To Private Equity For $2.7B

Data analytics company Nielsen Holdings PLC (NYSE: NLSNhas agreed to sell its Global Connect business segment to private equity firm Advent International for $2.7 billion

The company announced Sunday that former CEO of TransUnion (NYSE: TRU), Jim Peck, would partner with Advent to accelerate Global Connect's innovation.

By spinning off the Global connect business, Nielsen hopes to achieve enhanced financial flexibility to execute growth strategies.

What Happened: Nielsen CEO David Kenny commented that "the sale of this business to Advent will deliver substantial value sooner than was anticipated through the planned spin-off and creates certainty for all stakeholders."

The deal is expected to close in Q2 2021, and the new company will be renamed NielsenIQ.

The current CEO of Nielsen Global Connect, David Rawlinson, would remain at the new company's helm, and Peck will manage the daily activities, both operational and strategic.

Why Does It Matter: Nielsen will share product & brand licenses and trademarks with Global Connect for 20 years after the deal close. Additionally, the companies will also share reciprocal licenses for certain data over five years.

According to Bloomberg, most of the company's debt is due over the next three years, and the sales proceeds would ease payoffs. 

Nielsen expects to reach the year-end 2020 net leverage of 4X.

In November 2019, Nielsen considered a spin-off by way of a public listing after being pressured to offload the Global Connect business by investor Elliot Management Corp — Bloomberg.

Price Action: NLSN shares have advanced 8.3% to $14.65 in the pre-market session on the last check Monday.

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