30 May CDW buyer supports Berbee growth plans
Vernon Hills, Ill. – CDW Corp. has signed a definitive merger agreement to be acquired for $7.3 billion by the Chicago-based private equity firm Madison Dearborn Partners, which has endorsed plans to grow Berbee Information Networks.
In a conference call with investors, CDW chief executive officer John Edwardson indicated that Madison Dearborn Partners is supportive of CDW’s growth strategies, including a planned expansion of the Berbee platform.
CDW, a Fortune 500 company that purchased Berbee last year, has vowed to grow Berbee into a $1 billion company.
“One of the things that was very pleasing as we went through the process is Madison Dearborn’s endorsement of our long-term strategy and goals and objectives as a company,” Edwardson said, “and I think that is clearly very important in an area where this management team, Madison Dearborn, has a very good consensus.”
Edwardson said more information about the deal would be forthcoming in a proxy statement to be filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
Under the terms of the deal, CDW shareholders would receive $87.75 in cash for each share of common stock they hold.
The acquisition, which was the culmination of an auction process in which a number of potential bidders took part, is subject to approval from CDW shareholders. The transaction could close near the end of the third quarter of 2007, or early in the fourth quarter.
Edwardson said the proposal from Madison Dearborn Partners represented the highest bid. The firm, which focuses on management buyout transactions and other private equity investments, has more than $14 billion of equity capital under management.
CDW shareholders might have other options to choose from. Under the merger agreement, CDW will actively solicit proposals from additional third parties for the next 30 days, but there is no assurance that other bids will be submitted.
• Berbee to expand at New Venture Center
• Anatomy of a deal: CDW and Berbee
• CDW names VP to handle Berbee merger
• Tom Still: Who’s right about Wisconsin – CDW or RedPrairie?
• Berbee believes acquisition by CDW will make it a national IT player