Milbank, Slaughters in UK first with ITV takeover offer

Milbank Tweed Hadley & McCloy and Slaughter and May have secured the lead roles advising the consortium attempting to take control of ITV with a groundbreaking deal that marks the first of its kind in the UK.

As first revealed on (24 March), Milbank and Slaughters are advising a consortium consisting of Apax Partners, Blackstone and Goldman Sachs, which has been lobbying shareholders to accept its novel approach after an initial rejection by the ITV board.

The consortium is proposing a leveraged recapitalisation, whereby it will put £1.3bn into ITV’s capital base in return for a 48 per cent stake. Existing shareholders would receive a cash payout.

The payout would cost £3.6bn and be funded in a similar way to a leveraged buyout. Under the proposed deal, ITV would remain a publicly traded company, with private equity and incumbent shareholders taking any benefits from the restructure.

Milbank M&A corporate partner Tim Emmerson and Slaughters corporate chief Chris Saul are the lead advisers on the proposed leveraged recapitalisation.

Emmerson told The Lawyer: “This is the first time a deal like this has ever been proposed in the UK.”

Lovells head of corporate finance Hugh Nineham is advising ITV.

Ashurst private equity head Charlie Geffen is acting for longstanding client Apax.