Reed Elsevier to acquire ChoicePoint, Inc.

International law firm Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer is assisting Reed Elsevier in its acquisition of ChoicePoint for $4.1bn (£2.1 bn/€2.8bn) payable in cash. This comprises an equity value of US$3.5bn and the assumption of $0.6bn of net debt. The acquisition is subject to ChoicePoint shareholder and regulatory approvals.

ChoicePoint has a leading market position providing data analytics to the the insurance sector and will be combined with the Lexis Nexis Risk Information Analytics Group to create a risk management business with $1.5bn in revenues and a leading position in the fast growing risk management market place.

The Freshfields team was led by corporate partner Julian Long and included finance partner Edward Evans who advised on the $4.65bn new bank facility, antitrust partner David Aitman on European antitrust matters and Dutch corporate partner Robert Ten Have. Sullivan & Cromwell is acting for Reed Elsevier on the proposed merger of ChoicePoint with Lexis Nexis Information Analytics Group.

Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer is also acting for Reed in connection with the planned divestment of Reed Business Information. Freshfields acted for Reed Elsevier in relation to the sale of the Harcourt education business in two separate transactions which have now completed, realising aggregate proceeds of £2.5bn (€3.6bn) and in relation to the return of net proceeds to shareholders by Reed Elsevier Plc and Reed Elsevier NV.

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