Qihoo 360 to be taken private in $9.3 bln deal: Reuters

Chinese mobile security software maker Qihoo 360 Technology Co said it agreed to be acquired by a group of investors for about $9.3 billion, including about $1.6 billion of debt.

The holders of each American Depositary Share (ADS) – two of which represent three class A ordinary shares – will get $77 in cash, while owners of class A and class B ordinary shares will receive $51.33 in cash per share, the company said on Friday.

The $77 represents a premium of 7.2 percent to Qihoo’s Thursday closing.

Qihoo’s shares were trading at $73.97 before the opening bell.

Qihoo said in June it received a buyout offer from a consortium led by Chief Executive Hongyi Zhou, making the company the latest in a long list of Chinese tech companies that had received ‘go-private’ offers.

The company said on Friday entities controlled by CEO Zhou, who is also Qihoo’s co-founder, and Chairman Xiangdong Qi agreed to vote all their shares in favor of the deal. Their combined stake represents about 61 percent of the voting rights attached to the outstanding shares.

The consortium taking the company private includes Citic Guoan, Golden Brick Silk Road Capital, Sequoia Capital China, Taikang Life Insurance, Ping An Insurance, Sunshine Insurance, New China Capital, Huatai Ruilian, Huasheng Capital or their affiliated entities.

Photo of mobile security device courtesy of Shutterstock