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Interbike parent sold to Canadian private equity firm

Published May 6, 2013

SAN JUAN CAPISTRANO, CA (BRAIN) — Canada-based Onex Corp. has agreed to buy Nielsen Expositions, the owner of Interbike and the Outdoor Retailer shows, from Nielsen Holdings for $950 million.

Interbike officials said they expected no immediate changes as a result of the sale. Nielsen Expositions also owns the trademark rights to Bicycle Retailer & Industry News, which is operated independently under license by a for-profit division of the National Bicycle Dealers Association.

Onex, traded on the Toronto stock exchange under the OCX symbol, manages about $15 billion in assets in a variety of industries. Its businesses have assets of $44 billion. It doesn't appear to own any businesses related to the trade-show industry. Bike industry members may be interested in noting that Onex owns a minority share of Tomkins Ltd., the parent company of Gates, maker of the CarbonDrive bike drivetrain. Onex also owns a share of the Tropicana Las Vegas resort.

Pat Hus, managing director of Interbike and Health & Fitness Business, does not expect the change in ownership will have any significant impact to the shows. "It's business as usual. Of course there are shared services that will be looked at. But the impact to us internally and to our attendees and exhibitors is minimal. If anything, it is more opportunity to grow and support the shows. This is a group that wants to see growth," said Hus.

Nielsen Expositions produces more than 65 business-to-business trade shows and conference events each year across nine markets, including general merchandise, sports, hospitality and retail design, jewelry and photography. Nielsen Expositions has approximately 240 employees and operates out of four U.S. offices. Last year the division produced revenue of approximately $183 million.

“This is an exciting development in the history of the Nielsen Expositions business,” said David Loechner, president of Nielsen Expositions. “Onex’s experience and successful track record in executing similar corporate carve-outs and building those divisions into industry-leading businesses position it as a strong partner. We look forward to working with Onex to execute our strategic plan and to continue to grow the business to better serve the exhibitors and attendees who participate in our events, all the while providing a seamless, business-as-usual transition for our clients and associates.”
Topics associated with this article: Mergers, Acquisitions & Investments

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