Avis Budget Group, Inc. and Avis Europe have announced an agreement for Avis Budget to acquire all outstanding shares of Avis Europe in an estimated $1 billion dollar deal. The acquisition unifies Avis and Budget brands globally under a single corporate ownership. The acquisition is scheduled to close in October 2011, subject to Avis Europe shareholder approval, court approval and regulatory clearances.
Avis Europe is an independent publicly traded company that operates the Avis brand via a network of over 3,100 locations in 112 countries, through wholly-owned subsidiaries in 13 countries and through license arrangement in an additional 99 countries. Avis Europe also operates the Budget brand through 950 locations in 59 countries.
“This transaction represents an outstanding opportunity for Avis Budget and the acquisition of a business that we have long sought to own,” said Ronald L. Nelson, Avis Budget group chairman and CEO.
“The transaction re-unites the global operation of the Avis and Budget brands under one corporate umbrella, and is both financially and strategically compelling. We expect the combination of our two companies will allow us to more effectively serve vehicle-rental customers worldwide, and to achieve operating synergies of more than $30 million a year. In addition, the acquisition will give Avis Budget an increased presence in rapidly-growing international markets, including India and China,” Nelson said.
“From a financial perspective, we expect the acquisition of Avis Europe to be accretive to Avis Budget’s earnings per share on a pro-forma basis with synergies, excluding any integration and other one-time costs and the non-cash effects of purchase accounting. Because Avis Europe and Avis Budget generally do not have operations in the same jurisdiction, the acquisition is not expected to face significant antitrust obstacles,” Nelson said.
The combined Avis Budget and Avis Europe businesses will have annual revenues of approximately $7 billion and owned or licensed operations in more than 150 countries. Avis Budget said it expects to fund the acquisition using a combination of its own cash resources, equity funding through the potential issuance of up to $250 million of Avis Budget common stock and debt financing.