Axel Springer pulls out of bidding for Scout24

September 5
6:38 PM 2013

The race for Deutsche Telekom's Scout24 had one less party participating as Axel Springer, the German publishing giant withdrew its bid. This would leave a number of buyout groups jockeying amongst themselves to get the inside track to purchase the online classified advertising business.

The said buyout firms include EQT, Hellman and Friedman, KKR, Providence, Silver Lake and TPG and these may be the list where the final bids would be required by mid-October. The bidding is for 30% stake in the company and has been valued between EUR1.6 billion and EUR1.8 billion or USD2.1 billion and USD2.4 billion, according to three anonymous individuals who shared their knowledge on the matter with Reuters.

At the USD1.5 billion price for the minority shareholdings, Scout24 would have an enterprise value of between fourteen and fifteen times its EBITDA or earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization. This though is below its UK peer Rightmove, which has an EBITDA rating of 21, according to data from Thomson Reuters StarMine.

According to an Axel Springer spokesperson, the German publisher was no longer interested in Scout24, at least for the time being. The statement did not elaborate further.

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