German LinkedIn rival Xing might become the focus of a bidding war between its current main stakeholder Burda AG, the German publishing company, and LinkedIn itself, according to German analyst Heike Pauls.
Burda recently increased its stake in XING to almost 40 percent, which triggered a mandatory offer to buy the rest of the company. Burda is offering 44 euros per share for the remaining actions, which would value XING at 240 million euros. Because of this low price, Commerzbank analyst Heike Pauls told the German newspaper Die Welt that she thought this valued Xing too low and that she expected a possible counteroffer from Xing rival LinkedIn: “Too cheap for a growth stock with consolidation upside. We still think LinkedIn may come forward with a better offer at some point in time.”
Despite her warning, Xing founder Lars Hinrichs (currently HackFwd) is leaving no doubt about whether to accept the Burda offer:
Xing still dominates LinkedIn in Germany, Austria and Switzerland
LinkedIn currently has about 175 million members globally but in Germany, Austria and Switzerland it lags behind Xing: in the DACH region (Germany, Austria, Switzerland) Xing has about 5 million members, with LinkedIn only 2 million. Read more about their market share in this presentation:
About Xing and Xing founder Lars Hinrichs
Lars Hinrichs, founder of Xing and later HackFwd
Xing was founded in 2003 by Hinrichs. Back then it was called the Open Business Club
, a place where business people, students and job seekers could manage their contacts and network. Hinrichs took Xing AG public in December 2006 and turned it into a profitable venture with annual sales of 35 million € and a healthy 35% margin (ebitda). He sold the majority of his stake to Burda in 2009 and founded HackFwd
Spotted by @siddyjobe (thanks!)
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