A special committee of the board of directors at 51Job.com, the Chinese recruitment marketplace, is considering a new offer to take the company private that reduces the previous offer by about 28% to $3.9 billion.
The company Wednesday announced the reduction in the original offer of $5.7 billion, which was made last June. 51Job is traded on Nasdaq under the symbol JOBS. It’s been trading in a range of $78 last July to $43 this week; the new going-private offer is for $57.25 per share in cash, or still about 25% higher than 51Job’s close in New York on Tuesday.
“Recruit Holdings Co., the Japanese firm that ranks as 51Job’s largest shareholder, could … boost its holding from the earlier plan,” Bloomberg reported, quoting sources. Bloomberg said Rick Yan, the co-founder and CEO of 51Job, “will be taking a bigger stake in the company compared with the previous deal structure.”
The other investors included in the consortium seeking to take 51Job private include DCP Capital Partners and Ocean Link Partners. Ocean Link also participated in an investment group that bought out the public shares of 58.com — China’s largest classified business — in September 2020 in an $8.7 billion transaction.
In November, 51Job announced that its going-private deal was delayed because of “consultation(s) with Chinese regulators on recent regulatory changes” and “a clear timeline to its completion cannot be provided at this time.”