Forbes to become a public company

Business media brand Forbes has announced a combination agreement with Magnum Opus Acquisition Limited (NYSE: OPA), which will see the publisher become a publicly listed entity. The combined company has secured an additional US$400 million of funding via private investment and upon closing the transaction, will retain the Forbes name and be listed on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) under the ticker symbol ‘FRBS’. 

“Leveraging our iconic global brand, Forbes has been executing a data-led platform strategy and is fast becoming the gateway for businesses, entrepreneurs and consumers to join the conversations and participate in the trends that are shaping the world today,” said Mike Federle, CEO of Forbes. “With this transition into a publicly traded company, Forbes will have the capital to accelerate growth by executing its differentiated content and platform strategy and fully realize the potential of our iconic brand.”

“It has been exciting to watch the Forbes management team successfully complete a digital transformation since we have been involved, and then deliver record annual returns,” said TC Yam, Executive Chairman of Integrated Whale Media, which acquired a majority stake in Forbes in 2014. 

“This is a testament to the outstanding, seasoned executive team, the consistently trusted quality of Forbes journalism and the dedication of the entire Forbes team. Now, it is time for the next exciting chapter in the Forbes narrative, one in which we are happy to remain involved as a significant investor and partner with the world class institutional and strategic investors at Magnum Opus.”

In a press release put out today, the company said that the move would enable Forbes to further capitalise on its successful digital transformation, pursue additional growth opportunities and fully recognize the strength and potential of its iconic global brand, which currently runs across 45 licensed local editions covering 76 countries. 

The transaction values the combined company at an implied pro forma enterprise value of $630 million, net of tax benefits, and is expected to close in late fourth quarter 2021 or early first quarter 2022. Forbes shareholders will own approximately 22% of the combined company at closing, and the publisher will be capitalised with up to $145 million in cash.

You can read the release in full on the Forbes website here.


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