Quebecor World Sells European Operations
$200M deal an “important step” in printers’ restructuring, CEO says.
Quebecor World has agreed to sell its European operations to a group of Netherlands-based investors, the Hombergh/De Pundert Group, for more than $200 million. The transaction is expected to close in June.
According to Quebecor World CEO Jacques Mallette, the sale is “an important step in our restructuring activities that we believe should enable us to exit creditor protection in North America as a stronger player in our industry.”
Earlier this year, Quebecor filed for bankruptcy protection and announced that it had entered into a $1 billion financing deal with Credit Suisse and Morgan Stanley.
Under the terms of the acquisition, HHBV has deposited nearly $80 million in escrow to be released to Quebecor once the deal is finalized. HHBV also will assume about $100 million of net debt, and a $33.5 million five-year note bearing interest at 7 percent per year, which will be payable to Quebecor World following finalization of the deal.
Quebecor’s European operations produce magazines, catalogs, retail inserts, direct mail products and directories. They include 17 printing and related facilities employing approximately 3,500 people in Austria, Belgium, Finland, France, Spain and Sweden.
The sale is not subject to the approval of either Quebecor World’s or HHBV’s shareholders. The only condition to closing, according to Quebecor, is court approval.