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Merger Monday: Keurig Green Mountain Buys Dr Pepper Snapple

It’s Merger Monday time: Dr Pepper Snapple Group and Keurig Green Mountain announced that the two companies will merge to create Keurig Dr Pepper, “a new beverage company of scale with a portfolio of iconic consumer brands and unrivaled distribution capability to reach virtually every point-of-sale in North America.”

The merger will combine such brands as Dr Pepper, 7UP, Snapple, A&W, Mott’s and Sunkist with coffee brand Green Mountain Coffee Roasters and the Keurig single-serve coffee system, as well as more than 75 owned, licensed and partner brands in the Keurig system.

Under the terms of the agreement, which has been unanimously approved by the Dr Pepper Snapple Board of Directors, Dr Pepper Snapple shareholders will receive $103.75 per share in a special cash dividend and retain 13% of the combined company, for a total consideration around $135, or a 40% premium to the Friday close of DPS.

Some more transaction details via Bloomberg:

  • Dr Pepper holders to get $103.75/shr in special cash div
  • Dr Pepper Snapple expects to pay its 1Q ordinary course dividend of 58c-shr
  • KDP anticipates total net debt at closing to be about $16.6b and it anticipates maintaining an investment grade rating
  • Keurig shareholders will hold 87% and Dr Pepper Snapple shareholders will hold 13% of the combined company
  • Upon closing of the transaction, JAB will be the controlling shareholder, Mondelez International to hold about 13-14% stake in the combined company

  • JPM, BofAML, GS have provided committed financing for the transaction

According to the press release, Keurig Dr Pepper will have pro forma combined 2017 annual revenues of about $11 billion.

Why the deal?

The company believes its complementary portfolio, access to high-growth segments of the beverage industry and shareholder value-focused management team will enable it to achieve sustained growth through continued innovation, brand consolidation opportunities and enhanced household penetration for its leading brands.

KDP targets realizing $600 million in synergies on an annualized basis by 2021. Dr Pepper Snapple expects to pay its first quarter ordinary course dividend of $0.58 per share. At the close of the transaction, the company expects to deliver an annual dividend of $0.60 per share.

The company will deliver strong cash flow generation and accelerate its deleveraging, with a target Net Debt/EBITDA of below 3.0x within two to three years after closing. KDP anticipates total net debt at closing to be approximately $16.6 billion and it anticipates maintaining an investment grade rating.

And some cheerleading commentary:

Bob Gamgort, Chief Executive Officer of Keurig, said, “Our view of the industry through the lens of consumer needs, versus traditional manufacturer-defined segments, unlocks the opportunity to combine hot and cold beverages and create a platform to increase exposure to high-growth formats. The combination of Dr Pepper Snapple and Keurig will create a new scale beverage company which addresses today’s consumer needs, with a powerful platform of consumer brands and an unparalleled distribution capability to reach virtually every consumer, everywhere. We are fortunate to have talented leadership teams within both companies, and I look forward to working together with the Dr Pepper Snapple team to make this combination a success for all of our stakeholders.”

Bart Becht, Partner and Chairman of JAB Holding Company and Chairman of Keurig, said, “We are very excited about the prospect of KDP becoming a challenger in the beverage industry. Management’s proven operational and integration track record along with their commitment to innovation and potential future brand consolidation opportunities, while maintaining an investment grade rating, positions the company well for long-term success and material shareholder value creation.”

Dirk Van de Put, CEO of Mondelēz International, which will have a significant stake in KDP, said, “We have been very pleased with our coffee partnership with Keurig, and strongly support the strategic rationale for this transaction. We look forward to continuing to participate in the compelling value-creation and long-term growth opportunities inherent in this powerful beverage platform.”

* * *

Goldman served as lead financial advisor to Keurig. BDT & Company, AFW LP, J.P. Morgan Securities LLC and Bank of America Merrill Lynch also acted as financial advisors to Keurig with Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP serving as legal counsel and McDermott Will & Emery LLP serving as tax counsel. Credit Suisse served as financial advisor to Dr Pepper Snapple and Morgan, Lewis & Bockius LLP is serving as Dr Pepper Snapple’s legal advisor. Clifford Chance U.S. LLP is serving as legal advisor to Mondelēz International.

Source: zerohedge.com

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