'Rumblings' of HT&E management buyout 'untrue' says Ciaran Davis | radioinfo

'Rumblings' of HT&E management buyout 'untrue' says Ciaran Davis

Thursday 02 May, 2019

ARN CEO Ciaran Davis has told radioinfo that an article* in The Australian yesterday, speculating about a management buyout of HT&E is untrue.

"Our absolute focus is running HT&E," Davis told us after the speculative, unsourced article by mergers and acquisitions reporter Bridget Carter said "rumblings" have emerged that a management buyout has been "suggested."

The untrue report says:

There has been talk in the market that a management buyout has been up for discussion, although which members of management may be involved remains unclear.

Bridget Carter wrote:

"Attempts were made by DataRoom to contact the company’s chief executive and chairman yesterday, but both were thought to be overseas. Some questioned whether the company could be in search of US-based buyout groups to provide funding for a deal..."

We are not sure what 'attempts' Ms Carter made to contact Ciaran Davis, but an email sent from radioinfo to check her story was answered within a few hours.

Carter did also quote some, also anonymous, "people" who doubted that such a deal would take place.

Ciaran Davis told radioinfo that the report is not true:

I don't usually comment on speculation but it’s not true and our absolute focus is running HT&E.
We have spent the last 5 years undertaking transactions as we completely transformed the business – this in itself is a unique achievement across our industry.
Where we stand today is 100% ownership of a market leading radio and audio business with  strong complimentary digital asset.
If someone approaches us with an idea or something that is value accretive to our shareholders we will listen, as we always have, but my sole focus is on running the business to its potential.

ARN has just announced the extension of its partnership with iHeartRadio, see our related report.


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Picture: Ciaran Davis, inset Bridget Carter

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