CDH bids for Chinese job seeker website

CDH with Shanghai Goliath is bidding for a 32 percent stake in Zhaopin.

CDH Investments’ CDH Fund V and Shanghai Goliath Investment Management LP have made a joint bid for 32 per cent of the Chinese jobseeker website Zhaopin.

The New York-listed website is majority owned by Australia-listed SEEK, a recruitment website in Australia and New Zealand. The bid is for the remaining stake SEEK does not own.

A spokesperson at CDH Investments said that the transaction had not yet closed and was at a “sensitive” stage.

CDH made a preliminary, non-binding cash proposal, according to a media report. The consortium has offered $17.50 per American Depositary Share and $8.75 for each ordinary share, representing a 22 per cent premium to the prevailing share price.

SEEK owns 68 per cent of Zhaopin, which has a market capitalisation of about $897 million. Australia’s Hyperion Asset Management owns nine per cent of SEEK, Zhaopin’s majority shareholder.

CDH Investment closed its oversubscribed Fund V in February 2014 at $2.62 billion. It was targeting $2 billion with a hard-cap of $2.5 billion. The fund invests in both growth equity and buyout deals in healthcare, consumer and financial services sectors in China. Less than 10 percent of Fund V will be allocated to invest in deals in Indonesia and Vietnam, according to CDH’s website.

Investors in Fund V include California Public Employees' Retirement System, Canada Pension Plan Investment Board, Singapore’s Government Investment Corporation and AlpInvest Partners, according to PEI’s Research and Analytics division.

As of August 2015, the firm had raised $600 million for a China mid-market fund. Half of the fund will be denominated in US dollars and the other half in renminbi. A first close of about $300 million took place late August.

CDH has $16 billion under management and invested in more than 160 portfolio companies, out of which 45 have been listed.

In 2015, the firm exited online insurance provider CNinsure in a $54 million deal and reaped around 4x its investment and a 35 percent IRR, as reported by Private Equity International.

In 2013, CDH, KKR, and Modern Dairy invested $140 million over 18 months to build two new large-scale farms in China.

With additional reporting by Carmela Mendoza.