In the latest of a series of disposals, Centaur Media has announced that it has entered into a conditional agreement to sell Centaur Human Resources, the owner of the Employee Benefits brand and the rest of its HR business, to DVV Media International for a cash consideration of £5m (subject to customary post-completion adjustments).
Completion of the disposal is expected to take place on 30 April 2019.
The HR business, part of Centaur’s professional services division, generates most of its revenues from events that include Employee Benefits Live, Employee Benefits Connect and the Forum for Expatriate Management. These events are supported by the Employee Benefits website and supplements, which provide news, analysis and research on the UK rewards and benefits industry.
The sale of the HR business follows the recent disposals of Centaur’s financial services business, including leading brands such as Money Marketing and Mortgage Strategy, and its travel and meetings exhibitions, including the Business Travel Show and the Meetings Show, which will raise in aggregate £14.25m.
Centaur has been exploring the divestment of its smaller businesses since a decision last October to simplify the Group’s structure and to focus management resources on its leading brands. Negotiations for the sale of other businesses are continuing and updates will be provided in due course. Centaur will consider the best use for the sale proceeds once the divestment process is complete.
DVV Media International is the UK subsidiary of DVV Media GmbH, a business publishing house, specialising in professional information in the transport & logistics and HR and Recruiter services sector. The HR acquisition will complement the DVV portfolio where it is already active with the HR brand Personnel Today.
Andria Vidler (pictured), chief executive of Centaur, said: “We are pleased to have found a supportive owner for the Employee Benefits businesses and the Forum for Expatriate Management, and congratulate DVV Media International on its purchase. I would like to thank the teams for their continued commitment through this sale process.
“This is the third disposal to arise from Centaur’s divestment review and increases the disposal proceeds to £19.25m. We are pleased with the interest that we have seen from potential purchasers, a validation that we own strong brands that are well-positioned in their market segments.”
Cavendish Corporate Finance is acting as financial adviser to Centaur in relation to the sale of the professional services businesses.
For the year ended 31 December 2018, Centaur’s HR business made earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation of £1.2m (before central overhead allocation) (£1.4m in 2017) on revenues of £3.2m (2017: £3.6m). At 31 December 2018, the business had gross assets of £0.3m.