Sabre to Go Private in $5 Billion Deal

Private equity firms Silver Lake Partners and Texas Pacific Group agreed to pay $5 billion to acquire Sabre Holdings and take the publicly traded company private, according to Travel Weekly. The deal could close early in the second quarter of 2007 pending regulatory and shareholder approvals, officials said. It is not contingent on the buyers obtaining additional financing. Sabre Holdings, which runs its GDS business through the Sabre Travel Network, also operates Travelocity and Sabre Airline Solutions. The company would still have to make some public disclosures about financials because certain long-term debt would remain outstanding, Travel Weekly reports. The company stated that the $5 billion deal at $32.75 per share gives stockholders a 30-percent premium over the average closing price of its stock for the prior 60 trading days ending Dec. 8. However, the $32.75 per share deal represents just a 15.6-percent premium over the stock's closing price of $28.32 on Dec. 8. Texas Pacific Group, with $30 billion in assets, has experience in the travel industry with prior investments in America West, Continental and Hotwire. Silver Lake Partners specializes in investments in technology companies.

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