This paper documents average acquisition discounts for stand-alone private firms and subsidiaries of other firms (unlisted targets) of 15% to 30% relative to acquisition multiples for comparable publicly traded targets. My results are strongly consistent with the notion that sale prices for unlisted targets are affected by both the need for, and availability of, the liquidity provided by the buyer. Corporate parents are significantly liquidity-constrained prior to the sale of a subsidiary, particularly when the subsidiary is being sold for cash. Furthermore, acquisition discounts are significantly greater when debt capital is relatively more expensive to obtain, and when the parent firm has below-market stock returns in the 12 months prior to the sale.
Journal of Financial Economics – Elsevier
Published: Mar 1, 2007
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