Springer Nature Said to Kick Off 1 Billion-Euro IPO This Month
(Bloomberg) -- Springer Nature, the private equity-backed academic publisher, is preparing to kick off a Frankfurt initial public offering, people familiar with the matter said.
The company targets to announce its intention to float as soon as this month, according to the people. It plans to sell about 1 billion euros ($1.2 billion) of new stock in the offering, said the people, asking not to be identified because the information is private.
The IPO size could be larger depending on whether existing investors sell stakes, they said. Springer Nature is considering seeking a valuation of about 7 billion euros, one of the people said.
Springer Nature is owned by buyout firm BC Partners and Germany’s family-controlled Holtzbrinck Publishing Group. No final decisions have been made, and details of the offering could still change, the people said.
A spokesperson for BC Partners couldn’t immediately be reached for comment, while representatives for Holtzbrinck and Springer Nature declined to comment.
Europe’s IPO market is starting to recover, bringing relief to the slowest year in more than a decade. Online retailer The Hut Group Ltd., Belgian fintech company Unifiedpost Group SA and mobile game maker Huuuge Inc. have all recently announced listing plans, though the pipeline still pales in comparison to the frenzy of share sales in the U.S. and Asia.
Listing candidates have been seeking to win over investors with pitches on the resilience of their businesses during the coronavirus pandemic. Springer Nature witnessed a 26% surge in submissions of journal articles in the first half of the year, led by research for its medical publications. Downloads on its content platforms have risen 46% during the period.
Springer Nature was created in 2015 through the merger of BC Partners owned Springer Science+Business Media with the majority of Macmillan Science and Education, controlled by Holtzbrinck. The combined company reported revenue of 1.72 billion euros in 2019, according to its website. The company employs around 10,000 people in more than 50 countries.
In May 2018, BC Partners and Holtzbrinck postponed an IPO of Springer Nature, citing unfavorable market conditions.
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