A group of private equity investors have sold TDL Infomedia, publisher of Thomson Local Directories in the UK, to Seat Pagine Gialle for £308m. Seat will also take on £150m of debt. Apax Partners, Advent International, 3i Group and members of the Thomson Local Directories in the UK had shareholdings in the company. TLD has a 16 per cent market share of the UK directories publishing industry.
Apax Partners led a secondary buy-out of Thomson Directories from 3i 18 months ago. The publishing company was bought for £220m. The company says that in the past two years it has increased its revenues from £80.8m in 1997 to £93.4m in 1999.
Toby Wyles, director at Apax Partners, said: “We are delighted to complete this transaction which has realised E275m for Apax Partners Funds, on an initial investment of E60m. Over the last 18 months the company has turned in an excellent performance. The whole team at Thomson impressed us last year with its achievements. It has continued to fulfil all our expectations. This has made the company attractive to a number of European media companies and Seat Pagine emerged as a very exciting potential new owner.”
Apax Partners and the other exiting TDL Infomedia shareholders were advised by Travers Smith Braithwaite.