Infoblox Santa Clara, CA. ()
There have been $100 billion in IT and software deals in 2016 and last week another $4.2 billion got tacked on to that sum with two more technology transactions.
Vista Equity Partners LLC announced on Sept. 19 its $1.6 billion acquisition of Infoblox Inc., a Santa Clara, California-based network security provider that raised $120 million through an initial public offering in April 2012.
Fenwick & West took the lead for Infoblox on that listing, one that securities filings show generated $1.75 million in legal fees and expenses. Not surprisingly, the Silicon Valley stalwart is also advising the company on its proposed sale to Vista.
Reuters reported in August on Infoblox launching a sales process after it received buyout interest from several private equity suitors. The company reportedly entertained several offers from multiple bidders before settling on Vista, a San Francisco-based private equity firm focused on data, software and technology businesses.
Kirkland & Ellis is fielding an outside legal team for Vista led by corporate partners Sarkis Jebejian, Joshua Zachariah, Joseph Halloum and Stuart Casillas, as well as finance partner Sonali Shah Jindal. The firm has had a busy year doing transactional work for Vista, whose COO and chief legal officer is former Kirkland partner David Breach. (Breach, a former head of Kirkland’s San Francisco office, joined Vista in late 2014.)
Vista turned to the Chicago-based Am Law 100 firm to handle its $1.65 billion acquisition of cloud-based event management platform Cvent Inc. in April, as well as its $2.7 billion buy of insurance technology company Vertofore Inc., a deal done in tandem with fellow buyout behemoth Bain Capital LP.
In June, Kirkland advised Vista once again on its $1.79 billion acquisition of marketing software firm Marketo Inc. Kirkland’s Jebejian, who joined the firm in late 2012 in a high-profile move from Cravath, Swaine & Moore, was part of a team from the firm advising Vista on that deal.
As for Fenwick, the firm took the lead for Infoblox in February on its $45 million acquisition of IID Inc., a cybersecurity company formerly known as Internet Identity. David Michaels, a corporate partner in Fenwick’s headquarters in Mountain View, California, advised Infoblox on that deal and is also handling the company’s proposed sale to Vista.
Other Fenwick lawyers working on the current matter include corporate partner Matthew Quilter and associates Chris Gorman, Bomi Lee and Victoria Lupu. Infoblox expects its sale to Vista to close by year’s end, according to The Wall Street Journal. The company is expected to retain its current executive team and keep its headquarters in Santa Clara. Stephen Yu serves as general counsel for Infoblox.
In other M&A news…
Lonsdale Consortium/Port of Melbourne
Last week the Lonsdale consortium—a group led by The Future Fund, Queensland Investment Corp., the Ontario Municipal Employees Retirement System, Global Infrastructure Partners and China Investment Corp. (CIC)—paid $7.3 billion for a 50-year commercial lease for the Port of Melbourne, Australia’s largest container port. The deal, which should be completed in October, comes after the Australian government blocked the sale of the electricity provider Ausgrid to Chinese and Hong Kong bidders, citing security concerns, as noted by London-based sibling publication Legal Week. The transaction would give CIC a 20 percent share of the new lease.
Legal Advisers: Minter Ellison for the Government of Victoria; Herbert Smith Freehills for Lonsdale
Johnson & Johnson/Abbott Medical Optics Inc.
New Brunswick, New Jersey-based pharmaceutical giant Johnson & Johnson announced on Sept. 16 that it had agreed to buy the eye health unit of Illinois-based Abbott Laboratories Inc.’s for $4.33 billion in cash. The deal, which is expected to close in the first quarter of 2017, would give Abbott a needed cash boost since it is in the process of buying Minnesota-based medical device company St. Jude Medical Inc. in a $25 billion deal announced in April, as well as pushing forward with its $5.8 billion buy in February of Massachusetts-based diagnostic device and service provider Alere Inc.
Legal Advisers: Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz for Abbott Labs
Tech Data Corp./Avnet Technology Solutions
Clearwater, Florida-based technology products distributor Tech Data announced on Sept. 19 its $2.6 billion cash-and-stock acquisition of Phoenix-based electrical components distributor Avnet Inc.’s technology solutions unit. The deal, expected to close in the first half of 2017, will help Tech Data establish a presence in Asia and develop new cloud and data center products.
Legal Advisers: Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton for Tech Data; Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher for Avnet
Eldorado Resorts Inc./Isle of Capri Casinos Inc.
Reno-based gaming company Eldorado Resorts agreed to buy rival casino operator Isle of Capri Casinos for $1.7 billion, a transaction that includes the target’s $929 million in longterm debt. The deal, announced Sept. 19, is expected to close in the second quarter of 2017 and will give the newly formed casino operator 20 properties in 10 states. Eldorado received $2.1 billion from JPMorgan Chase & Co. to finance the deal.
Legal Advisers: Mayer Brown for Isle of Capri Casinos; Millbank for Eldorado Resorts
Allergan Inc./Tobira Therapeutics Inc.
In its third acquisition this month, Botox maker Allergan announced on Sept. 20 its $1.7 billion plan to buy Tobira Therapeutics, a San Francisco-based biopharmaceutical company that develops treatments for an incurable fatty liver disease called nonalcoholic steatohepatitis, or NASH. The disease has become one of the hottest areas in biotech, according to Bloomberg. Pending approval, the deal is expected to close by year’s end.
Legal Advisers: Covington & Burling for Allergan; Skadden, Arps, Slate Meagher & Flom and Gunderson Dettmer Stough Villeneuve Franklin & Hachigian for Tobira Therapeutics
Canada Pension Plan Investment Board/Ascot Underwriting Holding Ltd.
Canada’s largest pension fund, the Toronto-based CPPIB, said on Sept. 21 it had agreed to acquire London-based Ascot Underwriting for $1.1 billion. Ascot is part of insurance giant American International Group Inc.’s Lloyd’s of London platform. AIG sold its 20 percent stake in Ascot as well as its fully owned funding subsidiary Ascot Corporate Name Ltd. to the CPPIB, according to London-based sibling publication Legal Week.
Legal Advisers: Debevoise & Plimpton for the CPPIB; Travers Smith for Ascot Underwriting; and Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer for AIG.