PFSweb Inc. (NASDAQ: PFSW) jumped 42% after announcing an agreement to sell its commerce agency, and customer experience business unit, LiveArea, to Merkle Inc. Merkle is a leading tech-enabled, data-focused client experience management company within Dentsu International, the global business unit of Dentsu Group.
PFSweb to sell LiveArea for $250 million
Merkle will acquire LiveArea for a total value of roughly $250 million under the terms of the deal, with net proceeds expected to range from $185 million to $200 million after transaction-related expenses and projected taxes. PFSweb anticipates using a part of the net proceeds of the sale, coupled with current cash on hand, to pay off its senior financing arrangements in full once the deal closes. LiveArea generated about $85 million in revenue on a standalone basis for the twelve months ended March 31, 2021. Subject to customary closing conditions, the transaction is scheduled to close in Q3 2021.
PFSWeb CEO Mike Willoughby said, “Over the past year and a half, we have worked diligently to return LiveArea to sustained growth, with our strengthened leadership and sales teams driving greater organizational efficiency and record sales pipeline activity.”
Agreement to help LiveArea fulfill its potential
Willoughby added that they think the agreement with Merkkle will enable LiveArea to fulfill its potential and create considerable value for the LiveArea strategic partners and position it to serve world-class clients better.
LiveArea President Jim Butler said that he appreciates the LiveArea team’s efforts, the rising pipeline of bookings, and additional service offerings they have established. He added that they believe that the integration into Merkle will offer additional support and opportunities for rapid development. Most importantly, the LiveArea team is looking forward to collaborating with the Merkle team to strengthen LiveArea.