By Serg Kenzorov
The Blackstone Group is an U.S investment group of companies, originally in the business of providing consulting services for M&A deals, that later evolved to become one of the largest private equity firms in the U.S.
Since 2017 The Blackstone Group has supposedly begun the acquisition of Maxar Technologies, a developer of satellites, spacecraft systems, space robotics and provider of geospatial information analysis.
Blackstone used a similar scheme to acquire Gigamon, a developer of traffic monitoring and network node visualization hardware and software.
A timeline of the acquisitions’ key events:
|Dario’s Board Entry||Dario has been appointed Group President of Space Systems Loral (SSL), a subsidiary of Maxar.||08.2017||Dario becomes a board member.||02.2017|
|Share ownership prior to acquisition||Dario purchased 5.7k of common shares.||11.2018||Dario was awarded 9.5k of restricted stock units.||02.2017|
|Loan from Blackstone||A $1.95m loan with an annual interest of ~4.08% (floating rate) until July 2024.||09.2017||A ~$20.4m loan with an annual interest of ~6.19% (floating rate) until December 2024.||12.2017|
|Share ownership at the time of the presumed acquisition||According to a SEC filing, Dario owned 26.6k of common shares and derivative securities in the amount of 191.7k at a conversion price of $52.02 and 21.9k at $66.03.||01.2019||Dario owned 20.3k of common shares.||12.2017|
|Blackstone acquired Gigamon stock at a cut-rate of $38.5 per share, though eleven months earlier the stock price had closed at $60.35.||11.2017|
|Dario’s Exit as a shareholder||
|Dario converted 20.3k of Gigamon common shares to $781k in cash, according to the merger agreement.||12.2017|
|Dario’s Board Exit||Zamarian left the company.||04.2019||Zamarian left the company.||01.2018|
Based on this information, it is reasonable to expect news of Maxar Technologies’ acquisition by The Blackstone Group in the near future.
Moreover, considering the history of some of the former Blackstone portfolio companies, where Dario has held a board member position, one could argue that his assuming the role of Group President at SSL is no accident. This is supported by the fact that the acquisition of Optiv (2015), Mphasis (2016), Cloudreach (2017), Gigamon (2017) and sale of Runtime (2017) happened under his management.