Global Sources to be privatised and sold to Blackstone

New York, 23rd May: Earlier this week, NASDAQ-listed Global Sources announced the company has entered into an agreement “of amalgamation with Expo Holdings I Limited and Expo Holdings II Limited.”

Initially, it was announced that under the terms of the agreement, all outstanding shares of Global Sources would be converted into the right to receive US$18.00 per share when the deal closes. Then later in the week, Global Sources announced that it had received another third party offer for US$20 per share.

As a result, the original buyer agreed to increase their offer to US$20 per share. The amount represents a 67% increase over the closing price on 22nd May and a premium of 91% over the average closing price in the previous 30 trading days.

Global Sources’ controlling shareholders: Merle Hinrich (the company’s founder and chairman), Mrs. Miriam Hinrich, and Hinrich Investments Limited currently own about 65% of the total shares. Those shareholders have indicated that they will vote in support of the amalgamation.

After the deal is approved, Global Sources will become a privately-held company and will be delisted from NASDAQ. After the privatisation, the new controlling shareholder will be The Blackstone Group, a U.S.-based private equity and asset management company with more than US$368 billion under management.

The deal comes as Global Sources has struggled in recent years with falling online revenues and slowing growth in its exhibition business. Overall revenues have dropped from a high of US$232 million in 2012 down to US$158 million in 2016.

Sources: Global Sources press release [1], Global Sources press release [2]