Cenveo Seeks to Annex Banta
STAMFORD, CT—Reeling from a 52 percent decline in quarterly profits, its shares trading at a two-year low and a restructuring ordered for its print sector, Banta may consider the timing of Cenveo’s proposed, unsolicited acquisition either fortuitous or extremely predatory.
Either way, the die has been cast by Robert Burton, Cenveo chairman and CEO, with Wednesday’s open letter to Banta Chairman, President and CEO Stephanie Streeter. In the letter, he expressed his “disappointment in hearing from you that Banta is not for sale,” in response to an offer of $46 per share, about $1.12 billion, for the Menasha, WI-based printer. The offer, which sent Banta’s stock soaring $12 to the $46 range, is contingent upon Cenveo obtaining adequate financing. Burton feels the financing would be “readily obtainable.”
Burton cited unreturned phone calls and e-mails, along with a desire to provide full disclosure to shareholders of both companies, as motivation for making the letter public.
A miffed Streeter responded with her own letter Wednesday, refuting that the parties had ever discussed a deal. She wrote that Burton’s financial advisors made an “ambiguous request to discuss your interest in our company” and she agreed to arrange a time to speak with them and learn more about Burton’s interest in Banta.
“At no time did your advisors mention any of the economic terms or conditions stated in the hostile, public overture. . .We find your actions to be inexplicable,” she wrote.
Streeter added that Banta’s board will review Burton’s letter of interest with its financial and legal advisors and offer a response shortly.