Alaska Communications to Be Acquired by Macquarie Capital, GCM Grosvenor in $300 Million Transaction
Alaska Communications Systems Group, together with Macquarie Capital and GCM Grosvenor, through its Labor Impact Fund, announced that they have entered into a definitive agreement pursuant to which the Alaska Communications will be acquired by an affiliate of Macquarie and GCM in an all cash transaction valued at approximately $300 million, including debt. The transaction will result in Alaska Communications becoming a privately held company and is expected to close in the second half of 2021.
Under the terms of the agreement, an affiliate of Macquarie and GCM will acquire all the outstanding shares of Alaska Communications common stock for $3 per share in cash. This represents a premium of approximately 57 percent over the closing per share price of $1.91 on November 2, 2020, the last trading day prior to the date the merger agreement was executed, and a premium of approximately 50.8 percent over the 30-day volume weighted average price as of November 2, 2020.
“After carefully evaluating Macquarie Capital’s and GCM’s offer, we are confident that this transaction is in the best interest of Alaska Communications and its stockholders,” says David W. Karp, chairman of the Alaska Communications board of directors. “Macquarie Capital has a proven track record of delivering large and complex transactions globally on accelerated timelines, and GCM’s Labor Impact Fund provides strategy driven capital that we expect will generate real value for our customers and the Alaska Communications workforce.”
Bill Bishop, president and CEO of Alaska Communications, stated, “This transaction with Macquarie Capital and GCM represents an exciting opportunity to enhance our financial position and expand our resources to better serve our customers. Macquarie Capital has extensive experience navigating the complexities and issues associated with public-to-private transactions, as well as addressing the various regulatory regimes associated with communications infrastructure transactions. It also has deep telecommunications expertise and a strong track record of investing in capital intensive businesses, which will be critical as we deliver on our strategy to utilize our superior customer service and fiber-based network solutions in providing industry-leading telecommunications products and services. Finally, GCM’s Labor Impact Fund provides strategic value to our business both through its experience in the telecommunications sector and in fostering partnerships with a unionized workforce. We firmly believe this transaction will allow us to enhance our expanded fiber network services and drive long-term value for our customers in Alaska and the Lower 48.”
The transaction is subject to the approval of Alaska Communications’ stockholders, regulatory approvals, and other customary closing conditions. The transaction has fully committed debt and equity financing and is not subject to any condition to do with financing. Equity financing will be provided by Macquarie Capital and GCM. Alaska Communications’ board of directors has unanimously approved the agreement with Macquarie and recommends that Alaska Communications’ stockholders approve the proposed merger and merger agreement. Alaska Communications expects to hold a Special Meeting of Stockholders to consider and vote on the proposed merger and merger agreement as soon as practicable after the mailing of the proxy statement to its stockholders.
Under the terms of the agreement, Alaska Communications may solicit superior proposals from third parties for a period of thirty calendar days (the “Go-Shop”) continuing through December 3, 2020. In accordance with the merger agreement, Alaska Communications’ board of directors, with the assistance of its advisors, intends to solicit superior proposals during this Go-Shop period.
TAR Holdings, which owns approximately 8.8 percent of the outstanding shares of Alaska Communications common stock, has entered into a voting agreement with Macquarie and GCM, among other things, to vote in favor of the merger. The voting agreement will automatically terminate upon the earliest of (a) the vote of stockholders on the merger, (b) any termination of the Merger Agreement, (c) any change in recommendation by the board of Alaska Communications, and (d) fourteen months after the signing of the Merger Agreement.
In This Issue
Meeting in the Middle
In January, when the Biden administration announced its ban on the future sale of oil and gas leases on federal land, the news understandably ruffled the collective feathers of Alaska’s oil and gas industry.