MDC investor Indaba Capital Management has been on a public mission the past two months to secure significantly better terms for MDC shareholders than Mark Penn’s Stagwell Media has offered in its proposal to merge the two companies.
And if it can’t get the terms, it wants Indaba hopes to kill the merger when shareholders vote on it next Thursday.
But Stagwell, publicly at least, remains confident it has the votes to get the merger done.
Among the MDC shareholders in the pro-merger camp is New York-based investment firm Madison Ave Partners and today, Stagwell announced it is recommending the appointment of the investment firm’s managing partner Eli Samaha to the board of the combined company if the merger succeeds.
Samaha had this to say about the pending merger: “As a long-term investor in MDC, I appreciate the efforts of other shareholders to strongly advocate for and to secure a superior outcome.”
No doubt that’s what Indaba has been doing for many months behind the scenes and publicly.
Samaha added he now believes the transaction, “as currently structured, represents the best path forward. The power and capabilities of the combined company substantially exceed either on its own.”
Indaba responded by asserting that Madison’s principal investor (not disclosed) is a “longtime close personal connection” of Penn, “further underscoring that this transaction is rife with alarming conflicts and concerning interlocks.”
In any event, that’s one big independent MDC shareholder for the merger and one against that we know. My guess is others will show their hands in the lead up to the vote July 26.