London – LAWFUEL – DLA Piper UK LLP (“DLA Piper”) has advised online auctioneer Tradus plc on its takeover by South African media firm Naspers. The transaction was structured by means of a scheme of arrangement led out of the firm’s London and Manchester offices.
The £946 million deal has been completed after being given the green light by competition chiefs in Poland, one of Tradus’ main operating bases.
Tradus conducts internet auctions across 12 European countries trading 24 hours a day allowing buyers to bid on goods and services ranging from computer software to collectibles and sports equipment.
Tradus was founded by former Financial Times journalist Tim Jackson in 1997 and now employs about 600 people.
The takeover came amid a wider revival of interest in internet companies with deals including Microsoft acquiring a stake in US-based social networking website Facebook, the flotation of price comparison website Moneysupermarket.com and the recent announcement that Bebo is being acquired by AOL.
Charles Severs, the lead partner at DLA Piper on this transaction, commented: “We have worked with Tradus for several years now. The management team have worked tirelessly to create the company that Tradus is today. At times circumstances have made this task far from easy but as one of the best performing shares on the market in recent years DLA Piper is delighted to have been of assistance along the way”.
Charles Severs was assisted by Polly Owen, Sandra Tsao, Tessa Smith and Alice Tearall. Andrew Harris in the Manchester office advised Tradus on the court procedure.