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Meredith Corporation (MDP)

  • Mon, Nov. 16, 9:41 AM
    • Media General (NYSE:MEG) says its board unanimously agreed to negotiate with Nexstar Broadcasting (NASDAQ:NXST) over its buyout bid (and unanimously rejected the bid as "significantly" undervalued).
    • The company says that as constructed, the proposal discounts Media General's standalone growth prospects, ignores value embedded in excess spectrum that could sell in the incentive auction, and doesn't reflect an "equitable" share of buyout synergies.
    • It will talk over the deal privately with Nexstar. The board had come in for some flak from investors after Nexstar went public with a $4.1B bid it had said it pursued in months of (fruitless) private discussions, preferring instead to pursue Media General's own $2.4B bid for Meredith Corp. (NYSE:MDP).
    • Nexstar's bid is for $14.50/share; Media General is trading at $15.52.
    • Previously: Starboard Value writes of frustration at speed of Media General/Nexstar talks (Nov. 10 2015)
    • Previously: Media General reaches deal with Meredith to exchange info with Nexstar (Oct. 14 2015)
    | Mon, Nov. 16, 9:41 AM | Comment!
  • Tue, Nov. 10, 9:49 AM
    • Starboard Value -- the activist investor which said it would vote against Media General's (NYSE:MEG) $2.4B deal to buy Meredith Corp. (NYSE:MDP) -- has sent a new letter to Media General expressing "surprise and frustration" over the pace of engaging with Nexstar Broadcasting (NASDAQ:NXST) over its hostile bid for Media General.
    • The firm says it continues to believe in the "compelling strategic and economic benefits" of a Media General/Nexstar tie-up, but wonders about the delay in determining that that lead to a superior offer.
    • It's been close to a month since a Meredith waiver allowing some mutual due diligence, Starboard writes; "Why would Media General not want to explore how much Nexstar may be willing to offer?"
    • Nexstar's $4.1B hostile offer led a number of investors and observers to question Media General's deal for Meredith over whether it was unfavorable to tying up with Nexstar instead.
    • Previously: Media General reaches deal with Meredith to exchange info with Nexstar (Oct. 14 2015)
    • Previously: Media General, Nexstar higher amid report that Meredith deal's dead (Oct. 07 2015)
    • Previously: Major holder Starboard Value weighs in against Media General/Meredith (Sep. 29 2015)
    | Tue, Nov. 10, 9:49 AM | Comment!
  • Wed, Oct. 14, 6:18 PM
    | Wed, Oct. 14, 6:18 PM | 3 Comments
  • Wed, Oct. 7, 10:50 AM
    | Wed, Oct. 7, 10:50 AM | Comment!
  • Tue, Oct. 6, 2:44 PM
    | Tue, Oct. 6, 2:44 PM | Comment!
  • Mon, Oct. 5, 5:01 PM
    | Mon, Oct. 5, 5:01 PM | Comment!
  • Thu, Oct. 1, 2:52 PM
    • Wells Fargo is adding its voice on the side of Nexstar Broadcasting's (NXST -2.5%) hostile $4.1B offer for Media General (MEG -0.1%), saying it's better for Media General's shareholders than the company's existing plan to acquire Meredith Corp. (MDP -2.4%).
    • After a merger, analyst Marci Ryvicker thinks NXST and MEG together have the potential to double, vs. about 21% upside in a MEG/MDP combination.
    • Ryvicker says she doesn't agree with shareholder worries that the existing deal is tilted toward Meredith's management and shareholders, but knows they're out there.
    • Earlier this week, activist investor Starboard Value said they intend to vote against a Meredith merger, favoring the deal with Nexstar.
    • Wells Fargo's Eric Katz thinks Meredith could be a buyer if there's no deal with Media General, looking for bolt-on acquisitions.
    • Previously: Major holder Starboard Value weighs in against Media General/Meredith (Sep. 29 2015)
    | Thu, Oct. 1, 2:52 PM | Comment!
  • Tue, Sep. 29, 11:18 AM
    • As Media General (MEG +1.2%) sorts out its position in the middle of an M&A scrum -- with its $2.4B deal to buy Meredith Corp. (MDP -1%) in place, and receiving a hostile $4.1B offer from Nexstar (NXST +4.3%) for its company -- Starboard Value has sent a letter saying it would vote against the Meredith deal.
    • "Even if the transaction made strategic sense, the valuation does not seem to make financial sense," Starboard writes, noting Media General is paying an implied 12 times average forward two-year EBITDA for Meredith's broadcast business, a "significant premium to where Media General currently trades."
    • Starboard Value owns about 4.5% of Media General. It says it reviewed "with great interest" the Nexstar offer, which it believes "highly strategic."
    • The question is which way Media General will go, if it already spurned Nexstar interest privately and with the market and major shareholders weighing in seemingly in favor of a higher-value offer.
    • "Media General shareholders are likely to push our board and management hard to consider all alternatives including Nexstar’s compelling bid," says SA contributor Chris DeMuth Jr., founder of Rangeley Capital.
    | Tue, Sep. 29, 11:18 AM | Comment!
  • Mon, Sep. 28, 11:11 AM
    • Shares in Meredith Corp. (NYSE:MDP) -- in an existing deal to be bought by Media General (MEG +24.7%) -- have tumbled 7.3%, to lower than their pre-deal pricing, amid Nexstar's (NXST +2.5%) intervening bid for Media General.
    • Media General acknowledged receiving the proposal from Nexstar and says that its board continues to recommend its transaction with Meredith. It will review the new offer "consistent with its fiduciary duties."
    • Shares of Meredith were at $45.94 when the Media General tie-up was proposed Sept. 8 and they rose to $50.47; they're trading today at $42.66. They hit a 52-week low of $39.40 a month ago, on Aug. 24.
    • Previously: Media General up 22.3% after Nexstar's $4.1B bid (Sep. 28 2015)
    • Previously: Benchmark: No winners so far in Meredith/Media General tie-up (Sep. 14 2015)
    | Mon, Sep. 28, 11:11 AM | Comment!
  • Mon, Sep. 14, 7:55 PM
    • If you're looking for the happy shareholders in the $2.4B merger of Meredith Corp. (MDP -2.6%) and Media General (MEG -2.4%), you may need to look a while longer, Benchmark Capital notes.
    • The firm hosted a media-heavy conference at which many attendees wanted to discuss the merger, which isn't a sure thing. Media General shareholders aren't happy about the price tag their company's paying and the deals it might crowd out; Meredith holders see a "modest" premium and lament a potential deal with Time Warner Publishing where synergies might have meant a $60/share consolidated value.
    • Meredith closed today at $48.15 vs. the deal price of $51.53, which was a 12% premium to the Sept. 4 closing price.
    • Benchmark thinks the deal is likely to close eventually as positives are “getting lost in the noise, including retrans synergies and a significant boost to Media General’s digital monetization strategy along with a consolidated 25% FCF yield." It holds Buy ratings on both stocks.
    • Previously: Urge to merge may be necessity for TV broadcasters (Sep. 08 2015)
    • Previously: Meredith jumps 9.5%, Media General slips 6.3% in reaction to $2.4B tie-up (Sep. 08 2015)
    | Mon, Sep. 14, 7:55 PM | Comment!
  • Tue, Sep. 8, 9:57 PM
    • The $2.4B combination of Media General (NYSE:MEG) with Meredith Corp. (NYSE:MDP) had the distinction of pushing M&A value in 2015 to an all-time record by early September ($1.503T in announced transactions, surpassing 1999's $1.497T), but when it comes to local broadcasters, industry consolidation may be a no-choice alternative.
    • Station owners face a challenging negotiating position with content creators, Miriam Gottfried notes, even as declines in ratings and ad sales pressures everyone. Broadcast station owners have high margins, a fact that some content owners (CBS more than many others) are pressing in tough retransmission negotiations.
    • Streaming services might go without them as well, as Sling TV has. Getting bigger (as acquisitive Media General was doing even before the Meredith deal) may help strengthen their hand, but the FCC is getting involved in retrans rule-making and may be biased against local broadcaster power as well.
    • Previously: Meredith jumps 9.5%, Media General slips 6.3% in reaction to $2.4B tie-up (Sep. 08 2015)
    • Previously: Media General to buy Meredith for $2.4B (Sep. 08 2015)
    | Tue, Sep. 8, 9:57 PM | Comment!
  • Tue, Sep. 8, 3:43 PM
    • Meredith Corp. (NYSE:MDP) is up 9.5% -- and Media General (NYSE:MEG) has now dropped 6.3% -- after today's news that Meredith would sell to Media General for $2.4B to create a local-broadcast giant.
    • The new company, to be called Meredith Media General, will be led by Meredith's CEO Steve Lacy, who'll serve as CEO and president. A 12-member board will hold eight Media General appointees and four from Meredith, with Media General chairman J. Stewart Bryan III as chairman.
    • The combination takes place just as a key season heats up: the 2016 presidential race, which means a windfall of political advertising for local broadcasters.
    • The two stocks' movement today could reflect the fact that Meredith shareholders are likely to benefit more from the deal, as Media General's pre-merger station portfolio will draw political ad revenue heavily from battleground states including Florida, Ohio, North Carolina and Iowa.
    • Meredith owns 16 stations (and operates a 17th), focused generally on fast-growing markets, including Portland, Ore.; Atlanta; Phoenix; and St. Louis. Media General owns 71 stations across 48 markets, and would end up with three in Portland after adding Meredith's two.
    | Tue, Sep. 8, 3:43 PM | Comment!
  • Tue, Sep. 8, 7:18 AM
    • Television station owner Media General (NYSE:MEG) agrees to acquire magazine publisher Meredith Corp. (NYSE:MDP) for ~$2.4B in cash and stock; including debt, the deal is valued at ~$3.1B.
    • MDP shareholders will receive cash and stock valued at $51.53/share, a 12% premium to MDP's closing stock price on Sept. 4.
    • The companies say the deal will create the third-largest local TV station owner in the U.S., with 88 TV stations that reach 30% of U.S. TV households.
    • The companies say they expect $80M in synergies within the first two years.
    | Tue, Sep. 8, 7:18 AM | 5 Comments
  • Mon, Jul. 13, 8:24 AM
    • Meredith Corp. (NYSE:MDP) has acquired Grocery Server, a platform that will allow it to expand digital shopper marketing ability as grocery shoppers increasingly use mobiles in their decision process.
    • The company began integrating Grocery Server in April 2014 and has already used the platform on campaigns for brands including Target, Unilever and Del Monte. It can suggest related products if a customer is searching recipes on, for example.
    • Grocery Server co-founders Corbin DeRubertis and Kevin Thomas will oversee shopper marketing at Meredith.
    | Mon, Jul. 13, 8:24 AM | Comment!
  • Fri, Jun. 26, 2:28 PM
    • Following news that Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia (MSO +0.5%) may be listening to five bidders for the company, activist shareholder Plymouth Lane Capital management disclosed a 10.9% stake in the company and that it would encourage a "timely, proactive and robust marketing process" in order to gather acquisition offers during the go-shop period.
    • MSO stock is trading today at $6.42, above the $6.15/share offer from Sequential Brands (SQBG -0.3%).
    • The go-shop period was reportedly added to the two companies' agreement after Sequential CEO Yehuda Shmidman leaked deal details early. Now interest is reported from competing bidders, including Iconix (NASDAQ:ICON), Meredith (NYSE:MDP), Global Brands and Authentic Brands.
    • MSO chief Martha Setewart owns nearly 49% of the company's class A shares.
    • Schedule 13-D
    | Fri, Jun. 26, 2:28 PM | 1 Comment
  • Thu, Jun. 25, 8:42 PM
    • Shares in Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia (NYSE:MSO) rose 3.9% today, and another 0.5% after hours, as the prospect of more (maybe several more) bidders for the company emerged today.
    • Sequential Brands (SQBG -1.5%) on Monday said it had agreed to acquire MSO for $6.15 a share (about $353M), in a done deal. But The New York Post reported that bidding has reopened for "at least five prospective bidders" as Sequential's CEO Yehuda Shmidman was said to have leaked deal details early.
    • That meant having to include a 30-day "go-shop" provision -- and now bidders may include Meredith (NYSE:MDP), which already has licensing for the Martha Stewart magazines; licensing group Iconix (NASDAQ:ICON); Global Brands; and Authentic Brands.
    • Sequential's board is reportedly "very disappointed that this occurred and wants to understand how this happened."
    • Martha Stewart shares were last quoted at $6.43 after hours, a 4.6% premium to Sequential's offer.
    | Thu, Jun. 25, 8:42 PM | 2 Comments
Company Description
Meredith Corp is a diversified media company focused on the home and family marketplace. The Company operates two business segments: local media and national media.