Private equity, Mergers and Acquisitions, Mergers and Acquisitions, MSP, Content

Private Equity Firms Acquire MSP Alaska Communications for $300 Million


Private equity firms Macquarie Capital and GCM Grosvenor are acquiring Alaska Communications Systems Group for $300 million in cash.

This appeared to be M&A deal number 449 that ChannelE2E covered so far in 2020. See the complete M&A deal list here.

However, the deal involved a "go shop" period -- which allowed Alaska Communications to seek superior buyout offers from additional firms through December 3, 2020. If no alternatives emerge, Macquarie Capital and GCM Grosvenor expect the deal to close in the second half of 2021.

Related Update - January 5, 2021: Rival buyer wins bidding war for Alaska Communications.

Alaska Communications is a broadband provider, IT solutions provider, managed IT service provider (MSP) and Microsoft Gold partner with Azure cloud expertise. The MSP operates a statewide data network, and a fiber optic system that connects Alaska to the contiguous United States.

Also, Alaska Communications recently announced plans to bring locally hosted Microsoft Azure Stack Hub cloud services to Alaska -- with should provide improved local performance for customers.

Private Equity Acquires Alaska Communications: Executive Perspectives

In a prepared statement about the private equity deal, Alaska Communications Chairman David W. Karp said:

"After carefully evaluating Macquarie Capital’s and GCM’s offer, we are confident that this transaction is in the best interest of Alaska Communications and its stockholders. Macquarie Capital has a proven track record of delivering large and complex transactions globally on accelerated timelines, and GCM’s Labor Impact Fund provides strategy driven capital that we expect will generate real value for our customers and the Alaska Communications workforce."

Added Bill Bishop, president and CEO of Alaska Communications:

"This transaction with Macquarie Capital and GCM represents an exciting opportunity to enhance our financial position and expand our resources to better serve our customers. Macquarie Capital has extensive experience navigating the complexities and issues associated with public-to-private transactions, as well as addressing the various regulatory regimes associated with communications infrastructure transactions. It also has deep telecommunications expertise and a strong track record of investing in capital intensive businesses, which will be critical as we deliver on our strategy to utilize our superior customer service and fiber-based network solutions in providing industry-leading telecommunications products and services. Finally, GCM’s Labor Impact Fund provides strategic value to our business both through its experience in the telecommunications sector and in fostering partnerships with a unionized workforce. We firmly believe this transaction will allow us to enhance our expanded fiber network services and drive long-term value for our customers in Alaska and the Lower 48."

ChannelE2E will track the go shop period to see if alternative Alaska Communications bidders emerge.

Joe Panettieri

Joe Panettieri is co-founder & editorial director of MSSP Alert and ChannelE2E, the two leading news & analysis sites for managed service providers in the cybersecurity market.