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Avnet To Acquire Bell Microproducts In Deal Valued At $594 Million

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Avnet, a publicly listed global distributor of electronic parts, enterprise computing, storage and others products, has agreed to acquire Bell Microproducts in an all-cash merger for $7 per share.

That’s roughly a 30% premium based on Bell’s share price at Friday’s market close.

This equates to an equity value of about $252 million and a transaction value of approximately $594 million, assuming net debt for Bell of $342 million at face value as of December 31, 2009.

The acquisition has been approved by the Boards of Directors of both companies and is subject to the approval of Bell’s shareholders as well as customary regulatory approvals. The transaction is expected to close in 60 to 120 days.

Bell Microproducts distributes storage and computing technology products. The company was founded in 1988 and employs over 1,900 employees in 55 offices around the world. In calendar year 2009, Bell registered sales of approximately $3 billion – it currently expects to generate first quarter 2010 sales of $795 million to $815 million.

Avnet has been around for way longer: originally founded by Charles Avnet in 1921, it was incorporated in 1955 and went public 4 years later. The company boasts offices in over 300 locations across the globe, and employs roughly 12,000 people.

Avnet’s share price ticked off at 28.37 in recent trading and boasts a $4.3 billion market cap – Bell shares are up 28% in pre-market trading.

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