Anixter International told rAVe Friday that a private investment firm called Clayton, Dubilier & Rice will purchase the company. The Anixter acquisition, valued at $3.8 billion, will turn Anixter back into a private company again. Anixter has been a publicly-traded company since 1967 on the NYSE American Exchange. When Anixter released The Blue Book in 1968, the company reached more than $10 million in sales and had 700 employees. By 1980, Anixter had more than 2,000 employees and added locations in Canada and the United Kingdom. Now, it has more than 9,300 employees, and last year it reached $8.4 billion in sales.
The stock closed at $84.77 on Friday after news of the Anixter acquisition. It closed on Wednesday at $71.39.
CEO Bill Galvin spoke to the Chicago Tribune last week and said, “We weren’t looking to go private. We were running the company as a public company and we’re prepared to do that. We’ve been very public about what our strategy is long-term, and we were approached by a company that we felt was a serious — seriously interested in our company. And of course, it’s our responsibility, our fiduciary responsibility to consider serious companies. And that is how we started in this venture.”
As you likely know, Anixter distributes some AV gear under the brand focusing primarily in the UCC space. It carries brands such as Barco, Atlas, Legrand, NEC and Peerless-AV.