TME says it’s looking for buyer, or partner

26 Jul 2017

Trader Media East (TME), a classifieds company with HQ in Amsterdam and operations in Russia, Belarus, and Kazakhstan, is officially up for sale. On July 24, it notified the London Stock Exchange (LSE) as follows (official statement):

Potential sale of assets or businesses of the company 

TME Limited is considering a number of strategic and restructuring options, including: 

+ the sale of one or more of its subsidiaries, and/or their brands, or the business in its entirety or in parts, to potential investors;

+ the development of strategic partnership(s).

It cannot be said with any certainty that an offer within this context will ultimately be made, and it cannot be assumed that this process will lead to a definitive sale, or strategic partnership. It should be noted that this process may terminate without any results attained. 

Shortly afterward, the Russian newspaper Kommersant reported that TME started looking around in Russia for buyers of sites in its portfolio roughly two weeks ago. This explained why TME CEO Kamil Ozornek resigned suddenly a few days ago, and a spokesman told us the search for a successor had not started yet (our report here).

The advisor Deloitte has been appointed to handle the corporate restructuring (sale, or partnership).

TME listed on the LSE in 2006. Currently, Hürriyet Invest B.V. owns 97.3 percent of TME. Hürriyet is a Turkish newspaper, which belongs to the Dogan Yayin Holding. The stake was acquired for about $500 million U.S.. TME employs 484 permanent people in the abovementioned countries.

TME focuses on the verticals stuff, autos, real estate and jobs*. It publishes more than 150 printed publications and operates about 22 sites.

A comment couldn’t be obtained from any party. But, it is clear from the official statement, that TME is keeping all options open, and that it’s still hoping for a different solution from a full-on sale.

According to the Kommersant report, Irr.ru and Job.ru are up for sale. The report quoted local analysts who said “in current circumstances, it will be tough to find buyers”. 

Aleksey Zaharov, president of Superjob.ru, told us the competition has been beating TME for quite a while already. He said, if anything was up for sale, Superjob.ru would only be interested in the Job.ru domain. Avito might also buy Irr.ru to direct the traffic to its website, he added. 

*For portfolio of classified sites click here.

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Emre Dalkilic

Emre Dalkilic joined the AIM Group in 2014 as writer and analyst for Turkey. He has been working as a reporter, editor, editor-in-chief, and executive editor in different (primarily focusing on the growing Turkish economy) magazines more than 13 years. As a member of multiple organizations focusing on global economies coupled with a passion for scientific research, he actively contributes coverage on various business sectors within the online media and classified industries.Emre won three scientific article prizes in the field of economics and his works can be seen in many daily newspapers in Turkey (such as Sabah, Zaman and Radikal). He also works with non-governmental organizations as a volunteer and occasionally serves as a board member. Emre has also been involved in social projects including a project with the World Bank.