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Travers Smith advises Auction Technology Group plc on the proposed $525 million acquisition of LiveAuctioneers, funded by a £244 million cash box placing and new debt financing


Travers Smith LLP has advised Auction Technology Group plc (ATG) on a £244 million cashbox placing, new debt financing and the proposed $525 million acquisition of LiveAuctioneers, a leading curated online North American Arts & Antiques Marketplace, from US Private Equity fund Cove Hill Partners. 

ATG is the operator of the world's leading marketplaces for curated online auctions, connecting bidders to auctioneers across three large markets: industrial and commercial equipment, art and antiques, and consumer surplus and retail returns.

This acquisition will add a leading marketplace in North America to ATG's growing portfolio, transforming the reach, capabilities and efficiencies of ATG's platform and adding momentum to ATG's growth trajectory. The acquisition constitutes a Class 1 transaction for ATG under the Listing Rules and completion is conditional upon, amongst other things, approval of the transaction by ATG's shareholders.

The Travers Smith team previously advised ATG on its highly successful £600 million Main Market IPO in early 2021. ATG's market capitalisation as at close of business on 21 June 2021 was more than £1.2 billion.

The team was led by Head of Corporate M&A and ECM Andrew Gillen, supported by Associates Fabian McNeilly and Henry Thorpe, and Trainee James Humphrey. The team also included specialist advice from Finance Partner Donald Lowe and Associate Michael Leadbeater, US securities Senior Counsel Brent Sanders and Associate Kristen Roth, Tax Senior Counsel Jonathan Woodall and Associate Hugh Brooks, and Incentives Senior Counsel Elissavet Grout.

Numis Securities Limited acted as Sponsor, Joint Global Co-ordinator, Joint Bookrunner, Joint Financial Adviser and Debt Adviser. J.P. Morgan Securities plc (trading as J.P. Morgan Cazenove) acted as Joint Global Co-ordinator, Joint Bookrunner and Joint Financial Adviser.

Choate, Hall & Stewart LLP provided US law advice to ATG in relation to the acquisition. 

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