Private equity firm Carlyle Group LP will pay $3.3 billion to acquire Getty Images Inc. from Hellman & Friedman LLC, Reuters reported Tuesday. Carlyle prevailed over other private equity bidders, including CVC Capital Partners in the auction for Getty, the largest supplier of stock photos, video and other digital content.
Global alternative asset manager The Carlyle Group (NASDAQ: CG) and Getty Images management announced today they have formed a partnership to acquire Getty Images, Inc., a global creator and distributor of still imagery, video and multimedia products, from Hellman & Friedman for $3.3 billion. Carlyle will acquire a controlling stake in Getty Images, while Getty Images Co-Founder and Chairman Mark Getty and the Getty family will roll substantially all of their ownership interests into the transaction. Getty Images management, including Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer Jonathan Klein, will also invest significant equity in the company.
“Getty Images consistently demonstrates growth, leadership and prominence as one of the world’s leading media companies. This partnership with The Carlyle Group reflects and bolsters our ongoing strategy, strong management team and the talent of our dedicated employees. We are delighted to collaborate with Carlyle, with its formidable pedigree and success, and take the business into its next phase of development and growth,” said Jonathan Klein, Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Getty Images.
Mark Getty, Co-Founder and Chairman, added, “In seventeen years, we have built a business that has revolutionized the industry, with innovation at its core. I am confident that the partnership between Getty Images and The Carlyle Group will see the company’s success continue.”
Eliot Merrill, Managing Director of The Carlyle Group, said, “Getty Images is the premier, digital global marketplace for commercial visual content. We look forward to partnering with Mark Getty, Jonathan Klein and the talented Getty Images management team. We will harness Carlyle’s financial resources and global network to help take Getty Images to the next stage of product innovation and global growth.”
Andy Ballard, Managing Director, Hellman & Friedman added, “We acquired Getty Images in 2008 because we believed in its strategic direction, growth potential and ability to build on its leading position as one of the world’s premier media franchises. Our partnership exceeded our expectations, and has resulted in an outstanding investment for Hellman & Friedman. We’re confident the business is well positioned for future growth and success with The Carlyle Group.”
Carlyle Partners V, a $13.7 billion U.S. buyout fund, will provide equity financing for the investment. J.P. Morgan, Barclays, Credit Suisse, Goldman Sachs and RBC Capital Markets have provided committed debt financing for the transaction. The transaction is subject to customary regulatory approvals and is expected to close in 2012.
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M&A: Goldman, Sachs & Co. and J.P. Morgan Securities LLC
Legal: Weil Gotshal & Manges LLP and Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP
The Carlyle Group
Legal: Debevoise & Plimpton
Hellman & Friedman
Legal: Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP
M&A: Allen & Company
Legal: Davis Polk
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About Getty Images
Getty Images is a leading creator and distributor of still imagery, video and multimedia products, as well as a recognized provider of other forms of premium digital content, including music. Getty Images serves business customers in more than 100 countries and is the first place creative and media professionals turn to discover, purchase and manage images and other digital content. Its award-winning photographers and imagery help customers produce inspiring work which appears every day in the world’s most influential newspapers, magazines, advertising campaigns, films, television programs, books and Web sites. Visit Getty Images at www.gettyimages.com to learn more about how the company is advancing the unique role of digital media in communications and business, and enabling creative ideas to come to life. Additional information on how Getty Images inspires and powers communications can be found on The Getty Images Blog at blog.gettyimages.com as well as on Facebook at www.facebook.com/gettyimages and Twitter at www.twitter.com/gettyimages.
About The Carlyle Group
The Carlyle Group (NASDAQ: CG) is a global alternative asset manager with $156 billion of assets under management in 94 funds and 63 fund of fund vehicles as of March 31, 2012. Carlyle invests across four segments – Corporate Private Equity, Real Assets, Global Market Strategies and Fund of Funds Solutions – in Africa, Asia, Australia, Europe, the Middle East, North America and South America. Carlyle has developed expertise in various industries, including: aerospace, defense & government services, consumer & retail, energy, financial services, healthcare, industrial, technology & business services, telecommunications & media and transportation. The Carlyle Group employs approximately 1,300 people in 32 offices across six continents.
About Hellman & Friedman
Hellman & Friedman LLC is a leading private equity investment firm with offices in San Francisco, New York and London. Since its founding in 1984, Hellman & Friedman has raised and, through its affiliated funds, managed over $25 billion of committed capital. The Firm focuses on investing in superior business franchises and serving as a value-added partner to management in select industries including internet & digital media, software, business & marketing services, financial services, insurance, media, healthcare and energy & industrials.