WSP to Buy Louis Berger for $400M; Alexandre L’Heureux, Jim Stamatis Comment

Canada-based WSP Global has agreed to acquire Louis Berger for approximately $400 million in an effort to expand its footprint in continental Europe and leverage the Morristown, N.J.-based professional services firm’s expertise in water, transportation, environment and master planning.

Alexandre L’Heureux, WSP president and CEO, said in a statement published Monday the planned acquisition would help boost the company’s exposure to the U.S. federal market with Louis Berger’s knowledge and experience in government contracts.

“We will focus on integrating U.S. operations and other regions that have proven to be drivers of growth, while pursuing the international restructuring Louis Berger had started,” L’Heureux added.

WSP said it will fund the purchase price with a term loan from Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce and expects the transaction to close in the fourth quarter of 2018, subject to regulatory approvals and other customary closing conditions.

WSP expects to assume approximately $50 million in costs related to Louis Berger’s international restructuring efforts as part of the deal.

“I am very pleased about the prospect of joining WSP, as our values and strategies are aligned and our operations are complementary,” Jim Stamatis, Louis Berger president and CEO, said in a statement published Tuesday.

“This will create new opportunities for our employees and clients,” he added.

CIBC advises WSP on the transaction’s financial aspects, while Greenhill & Co. and Kirkland & Ellis LLP respectively serve as financial and legal advisers to Louis Berger.

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