Final Hurdle Cleared For Adevinta- eBay $13 Bln Advertising Deal

The final regulatory approval for a partnership of the global classified ads businesses of Norway’s Adevinta and the United States based e-commerce group eBay have been granted to the two companies, the Norwegian firm said in a statement on Friday.

This deal between the two companies was struck last year and it encompasses Adevinta acquiring eBay’s Classifieds Group in exchange for $2.5 billion in cash and 540 million shares. That transaction was valued at about $13 billion at current stock market prices.

The Norwegian firm said that for the deal to go through, the last hurdle was an approval from the Austrian competition watchdog which granted the deal a green light after an agreement with eBay to reduce its ownership stake in Adevinta within the next 18 months.

After the deal was granted a go-ahead from Britain’s Competition and Markets Authority earlier this month, this compromise formula helped to remove the last impediment to the deal that was still outstanding.  

“Adevinta is pleased to announce that closing of the transaction will be initiated shortly and is expected to complete on or about 25 June,” the Oslo-listed company said in a statement.

With the completion of this deal, eBay will become the largest shareholder in Adevinta and will have an overall stake of 44 per cent and account for 33.3 per cent of the voting rights in the company. The US firm will also get two seats on the board of the Norwegian firm post this deal. Norway’s Schibsted will hold around 39.5 per cent of the votes.

But eBay will need to bring down its financial interest in Adevinta to no more than 33 per cent within 18 months of the closure of the transactions as a part of the deal with Austria’s Federal Competition Authority (FCA), Adevinta said.

“The remedies proposed by Adevinta and eBay address the FCA’s concern that the transaction could potentially lessen competition in the Austrian market,” the company said.

Adevinta’s shares were up 2.0% to 165.7 Norwegian crowns.

As part of the overall deal, Schibsted will buy eBay Classifieds Group’s Danish assets from Adevinta for $330 million.

(Adapted from MoneyControl.com)

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