McGraw Hill acquisition latest big media
In a Monday morning press release, McGraw Hill Financial Inc. (NYSE: MHFI) announced that it has agreed to acquire SNL Financial in an all-cash deal worth about $2.23 bln. The total purchase price is partially offset by about $550 mln in tax benefits resulting from the transaction.
SNL Financial is privately held by an affiliate of private equity firm New Mountain Capital and by current and former SNL management team members.
This is the single biggest media deal in a week that has seen Pearson plc (NYSE: PSO) sell its Financial Times newspaper for $1.3 bln to Japan’s Nikkei and then put Pearson’s 50% stake in The Economist magazine up for sale, and that could fetch another $600 mln or so for the British company that is transforming itself into an education company. Last year, Pearson sold its financial data company Mergermarket Group to a London-based private equity group for $624 mln.
Where the SNL acquisition makes a fair amount of sense given McGraw Hill’s overall business, the transaction involving the FT and The Economist appeals to vanity buyers. It’s like buying a professional sports team minus the same likelihood of turning a profit. And if the FT and The Economist can change hands, what about the New York Times? Perhaps Amazon founder and CEO Jeff Bezos wants another newspaper to add to his burgeoning media empire that already includes the Washington Post and an investment in Business Insider.
McGraw Hill, the parent company of Standard & Poor’s, Platts, J.D. Power and Associates, and the majority owner of the