Silver Lake taking Endeavor private


Endeavor acquired by private equity firm Image: Endeavor

Sports and entertainment giant Endeavor is being acquired by private equity firm Silver Lake in a deal that values the company at $13 billion.

Billboard said the move comes three years into Endeavor’s tenure as a publicly traded company.

Endeavor Group Holdings, Inc. is an American holding company for talent and media agencies with its primary offices in Beverly Hills, California, United States. The company was founded in April 2009 after the merger of the William Morris Agency and the original Endeavor Talent Agency.

From its origins as a Hollywood talent agency, Endeavor has grown organically and through acquisition to create an integrated portfolio of businesses and capabilities across the sports and entertainment ecosystem.

Endeavor owns agencies WME and IMG. Silver Lake is Endeavor’s largest shareholder, having made its initial investment in WME in 2012 and purchasing IMG two years later.

Silver Lake plans on acquiring 100% of the remaining shares by offering stockholders $27.50 per share in cash, representing a 55% premium to the unaffected share price of $17.72 per share.

Endeavor noted that was the price of shares on Oct. 25, 2023, a day before the company disclosed a review of strategic alternatives that included going private.

The company, which went public in 2021 following pandemic-era delays, currently trades as EDR on the New York Stock Exchange.

Egon Durban, co-CEO and Managing Partner of Silver Lake, and Chairman of the Board of Endeavor, said: “This is a very special partnership. Together, we have built and grown Endeavor from $350 million in annual revenue when we first invested in 2012 to nearly $6 billion in consolidated revenue today.

“Now, Endeavor can take advantage of its unique core platform to meet the dynamic forces driving growth in content, sports, and live events with bold vision. Consistent with our mission and underscored by this commitment being among the largest in Silver Lake’s history, we are all in on working with the Endeavor team and our trusted anchor investors to create value by accelerating growth at scale.”

In addition to WME and IMG, Endeavor’s portfolio includes live event hospitality firm On Location, marketing agency 160over90 and sports betting data firm OpenBet.

Endeavor is also the majority owner of TKO Group Holdings, formed last year to merge its martial arts league UFC with World Wrestling Entertainment.

Led by co-CEOs Egon Durban and Greg Mondre, Silver Lake’s $102 billion in combined assets includes a portfolio of companies like Oak View Group, Fanatics, TEG, Waymo, Stripe, Plaid, SoFi and Madison Square Garden Sports, among others.

Ariel Emanuel, CEO of Endeavor, said: “Since 2012, Endeavor’s strategic partnership with Silver Lake and Egon Durban have been central to our evolution into the global sports and entertainment leader we are today. We believe this transaction will maximize value for all of Endeavor’s public stockholders and are excited to continue to unlock and invest in the growth opportunities ahead as a private company.”

Patrick Whitesell, Executive Chairman of Endeavor, added: “With Silver Lake’s continued partnership and support, Endeavor is ideally positioned to capitalize on compelling trends in media and entertainment, where global content spending has reached more than $200 billion per year. In a business where the only constant is change, I know Endeavor will continue to lead the industry forward.”

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