Zayo, of course. This morning AboveNet announced that the go-shop provision that was part of its merger agreement with Zayo has expired. No additional bids were received, and therefore it looks like the deal will in fact go through as originally envisioned. There had been no serious talk of another bid (that I heard anyway), and indeed it was hard to come up with a bidder with both the motive and the means that hadn’t already kicked the tires last summer.
The two companies anticipate closing the deal this summer, and I don’t doubt it given Zayo’s track record in pushing these things through. Zayo’s disruptive business model paired with AboveNet’s Tier 1 fiber density will put the combined company in a position to challenge the larger companies in the sector directly via a full national footprint. Congrats to Dan Caruso and his team for what will probably be the fiber M&A coup of the year — if you think the fiber business is inherently undervalued right now (as I obviously do).
A few days ago, AboveNet filed a preliminary proxy with the SEC detailing the expected financing that Zayo will be using to make the $2.3B deal happen:
- up to $1.5B from a senior secured term loan
- $750M in senior secured notes
- $500M in senior unsecured notes
- $290M in equity financing from GTCR and Charlesbank
- cash on hand
If that adds up to more than $2.3B, I guess maybe they’re going to have a war chest on hand afterwards.