WPP this week completed the sale of 60% of Kantar to Bain Capital Private Equity. WPP announced the sale of 60% of Kantar in July, this year. The transaction was completed last Thursday.
According to WPP, approximately $1.9bn will be used reduce WPP’s debt, and $1.2bn will be returned to shareholders via a share repurchase programme, planned to be completed by March 2020.
“The completion of the Kantar transaction, earlier than anticipated, achieves the objective we set out in December 2018 to strengthen our balance sheet, and substantially completes our disposal programme. It is a major step in simplifying and focusing WPP, and we intend to return around 8% of our share capital to shareholders through a buyback programme. The partnership with Bain Capital means that we will participate in the future growth of Kantar as well as allowing our clients to continue to benefit from Kantar’s services,” said Mark Read, Chief Executive Officer, WPP.