Monday, May 16, 2011

Media firm musical chairs: Primedia sold to TPG Capital

For the private equity business it never ends: buy properties, sell properties, cash in some profits, dump some losses. For the folks at Primedia they know the routine all too well.

Today Primedia's President and CEO Charles Stubbs made the latest sales announcement: the company has been sold to TPG Capital for $7.10 per share, or about $525 million.
“I am pleased to announce this agreement as it delivers significant value to our shareholders," Stubbs said in the company's announcement. "In addition, it is a clear endorsement of PRIMEDIA and of the hard work and commitment of each and every one of our employees. TPG is a premier private investment firm and has a strong understanding and appreciation for our marketplace, our business model, our business strategies and the potential opportunities that lie ahead. We are very excited about this transaction.”

For Primedia, experience with the media banking business is just the norm. The company has been publicly traded for years, but its controlling stake has been owned by Kohlberg Kravis Roberts, which help found the company back in 1989. Founded as K-III, it soon was renamed Intertec Publishing and quickly began rolling up media properties – Macmillan, Funk & Wagnalls, nine magazines from News Corp., 14 properties from Cahners, etc. etc. Eventually it started selling off many of the properties it owned, such as the B2B titles it had acquired that are now part of the Penton Media group – itself owned by a PE firm.