Website toolbar developer Yozma Venture Capital has sold 3% of Conduit Ltd. to W Capital Partners for $39 million. The sale comes a month after Yozma unsuccessfully sought to sell 9% of the company to Silver Lake.
The company value of $1.3 billion for Conduit equals that of Israel's largest companies, including public companies. Ofer Holdings Group unit Ofer Hi Tech Ltd., which owns 30-40% of Yozma, will be the biggest profiteer from the sale. Yozma will probably sell its remaining 6% of Conduit later.
Yozma acquired 9% of Conduit for $1.5 million in 2006. The $50 million Yozma III Fund, raised in 2001, has reached its termination, and is trying to sell its holdings.
Notice of the sale was included in an internal letter from Conduit chairman and CEO Ronen Shilo to employees, in which he said that they had an opportunity to sell their shares in the company to W Capital Partners. The company has no plans for an IPO anytime soon, or for a sale of the company. Shilo's offer gives employees whose options for shares have matured to benefit from the company's performance.
Last year, Conduit distributed a NIS 200 million dividend to shareholders and many employees. Ronen, CTO Dror Erez, and COO Gaby Bilczyk founded the company in 2005. The company has been trying to change its strategy, and rebranded to provide solutions for tightening the connection between content vendors and users.
Published by Globes [online], Israel business news - www.globes-online.com - on March 18, 2012
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