It’s a done deal: Online coupon company RetailMeNot is part of San Antonio-based Harland Clarke Holdings of San Antonio.
Last month, RetailMeNot, one of Austin’s most high-profile publicly traded software companies, agreed to be acquired by Harland Clarke for about $630 million.
Starting today, RetailMeNot will operate as a privately held stand-alone division within Harland Clarke, a global digital payments and marketing company. RetailMeNot, which has 565 employees, will keep its headquarters in downtown Austin with CEO Cotter Cunningham remaining at the helm.
It wasn’t a transaction that RetailMeNot sought, according to securities filings. But Cunningham said
being part of the global digital payments and marketing company will allow RetailMeNot to accelerate its growth and break into new markets faster.
The combined companies, he said, will create a multi-channel network of thousands of advertisers reaching hundreds of millions of consumers worldwide.
“We see this as growth for Austin,” Cunningham said. “I think we will be adding positions to help with this vast new source of content. We’re going to need help to do that, because all our people have jobs already.”
Founded in 2009, RetailMeNot operates the world’s largest online marketplace for coupons and consumer deals. Its sites and mobile apps provide coupon codes, free trials and other retail offers from more than 70,000 merchants including Macy’s, Nordstrom, Wal-Mart and Target.
The bet is that RetailMeNot will galvanize Harland Clarke’s 2013 acquisition of Valassis Communications, a direct-mailer company that delivers advertisements to millions of households.
Valassis, one of the largest suppliers of print coupons, has been making the transition to digital. Harland Clarke plans to use RetailMeNot to extend the reach of the coupons and promotions it manages.
“We now have significantly more local and new national content, and our challenge over the next couple months is figuring out how to take the side we have and add to it,” Cunningham said.
According to securities filings, acquisition talks began last November, when LionTree Advisors, a boutique investment bank in New York, contacted RetailMeNot to notify the company that Harland Clarke was interested in buying it.
Negotiations continued over the next four months, concluding with a deal announced on April 10. Under the agreement, Harland Clarke acquired RetailMeNot’s outstanding Series 1 common stock for $11.60 a share in cash -- a 50 percent premium compared with its April 10 closing price of $7.75.
“The addition of RetailMeNot offers our clients’ brands unparalleled opportunity to reach and target consumers with the savings they seek wherever they plan, shop, buy and share,” said Victor Nichols, CEO of Harland Clarke. “I am excited about the road ahead and working together to create one of the most powerful savings destinations in the world.”
Since going public in 2013, RetailMeNot’s shares have been in flux. After the company’s initial public offering in July of that year at an issue price of $21, they soared as high as $40 in early 2014. Since mid-2015, shares have traded in a range of $5 to $13.
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