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UBM to acquire Allworld Exhibitions

UBM plc announced yesterday that it has agreed to acquire Allworld Exhibitions for a cash consideration which values the Business at US$485 million on a debt and cash free basis.

According to UBM:

Allworld is the leading privately-owned Asian exhibitions business operating 51 tradeshows in 11 countries and across nine industry sectors. Allworld generated revenues of $97.2 million and EBITDA of $37.6 million (38.7% margin) during the twelve months ended 30 June 2016.

Highlights

Allworld is a high-quality, high-growth events business

* Pure-play portfolio of large, high-margin events: 90% of revenues generated from 28 Major events

* Consistent record of high organic² growth: 7.3% revenue CAGR over last 10 years

Strong strategic rationale, in line with Events First strategy

* Strengthens UBM’s market-leading position in Asia, creating the leading events business in the ASEAN region, and provides UBM with entry into the Middle East

* Strong sectoral complementarity with UBM’s existing portfolio – particularly in Food & Hospitality, Packaging and Manufacturing – with entry into Oil & Gas

* Significant opportunity to accelerate growth through operational initiatives and application of Events First best practices

* In combination with UBM, revenue growth is expected to accelerate over the next 24 months

Strong growth and margin expansion underpin attractive financial returns

* Immediately enhancing to earnings in 2017

* Return on investment to exceed cost of capital from 2019

* Fully debt funded with new bridge facility

* UBM expects to maintain investment grade rating and return to target leverage corridor of 1.5-2.0x within 12 to 18 months (in line with financial policy) whilst maintaining flexibility to continue with regular bolt-on acquisitions

Commenting on the acquisition, Tim Cobbold, CEO of UBM, said: “The acquisition of Allworld is wholly in line with our Events First strategy and represents an exceptional opportunity to accelerate growth by investing in a high-quality events business.

“In so doing we cement our position as the leading events business in Asia and achieve the number one position in the fast-growing ASEAN region. We see excellent opportunities to accelerate organic growth in the business.

“Allworld’s management and employees bring tremendous experience and expertise to UBM and I look forward to working with them to realise the growth potential of the combined business.”