Fintech Investments News

Global Blue Announces $100M Strategic Equity Investment From Tencent

Global Blue Announces $100M Strategic Equity Investment From Tencent

Validates Global Blue’s leadership, reflects confidence in ongoing travel recovery, and supports stated de-leveraging target

Global Blue Group Holding AG , the leading strategic technology and payments partner powering retailers’ improved performance and enhancing shoppers’ experience, is pleased to announce it has entered into a share purchase and investment agreement with Tencent, a world leading internet and technology company.

Tencent has agreed to invest $100 million in Global Blue common equity at a price of $5.50 per share, which is generally in line with the volume-weighted average price over the past 3 months. At closing, Tencent will own 18.18 million common shares, representing approximately 8% of the total fully-diluted share capital.

Jacques Stern, Global Blue CEO said: “We are pleased to welcome Tencent as a shareholder as we continue to diversify our ownership base. We have achieved robust revenue growth and margin improvement in recent quarters, thanks to the ongoing international travel recovery and our investments in digitalization and new products, as well as cost management. Today’s investment validates our strategy and confidence in the ongoing travel recovery. We believe Global Blue is well-positioned to continue to benefit from the return of Asian shoppers in FY24/25 towards 2019 levels, in particular Mainland Chinese, supporting our Adjusted EBITDA guidance of more than €200m in FY24/25.”

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James Mitchell, Chief Strategy Officer and Senior Executive Vice President of Tencent, added: “We have closely followed Global Blue’s digital evolution for several years, during which the management team has enhanced the company’s technology capabilities and service offering, extending its shopper and merchant reach. We are pleased to make a strategic investment in Global Blue to help support its future growth and look forward to continued growth in cross-border travel and shopping, including travel from China.”

The aforementioned common shares will consist of (i) 50% / 9.09 million secondary common shares to be sold by affiliates of Silver Lake and Partners Group and certain members of the board and management and (ii) 50% / 9.09 million primary common shares to be issued by Global Blue. The closing of the proposed transaction is expected to take place before month-end, subject to closing conditions. Global Blue intends to use the primary proceeds to reduce its debt balance, in pursuit of its long-term target of net leverage of less than 2.5x Net Debt / Adjusted EBITDA.

BofA Securities acted as financial advisor, and Davis Polk & Wardwell and Homburger as legal advisors, to Tencent. J.P. Morgan Securities and Deutsche Bank Securities acted as financial advisors, and Simpson Thacher & Bartlett and Niederer Kraft Frey as legal advisors, to Global Blue and its secondary sellers.

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