Post-acquisition, People Corporation will continue operating from its corporate office located in Winnipeg, Manitoba

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People Corporation to be acquired by Goldman Sachs Merchant Banking. (Credit: Gerd Altmann from Pixabay)

Goldman Sachs Merchant Banking has agreed to acquire Canada-based People Corporation for $15.22 per share about C$1.13bn ($885.45m) in cash.

The acquisition will be executed by investment funds managed by the private equity arm of Goldman Sachs. It will be carried out by implementing a plan of arrangement under the Business Corporations Act (Ontario).

People Corporation is engaged in providing group benefits, group retirement, and human resource services to organisations across Canada. The company has a workforce of around 1,100 people.

Goldman Sachs Merchant Banking managing director Anthony Arnold said: “We are thrilled to be a part of the next phase of the People Corporation story. The Company has a compelling client offering with experienced consultants and a national scale that have helped deliver outstanding organic growth over time.

“There is also a continued and meaningful investment opportunity to deploy capital and access opportunities in People Corporation’s core and adjacent markets.”

For the Canadian firm, the deal follows a review of its strategic alternatives after taking into account the interests of all stakeholders, which includes shareholders, clients, partners, and employees.

The review is said to have led to a comprehensive process that was focused on maximising value for the company’s shareholders. It involved discussions with a range of potential strategic buyers and financial sponsors, said People Corporation.

People Corporation executive chairman and CEO Laurie Goldberg said: “This Transaction delivers tremendous value for our shareholders while creating the conditions that will enable our team to write People Corporation’s next chapter.

“As a private company with a committed, well-capitalized and long-term owner, People Corporation will accelerate its scale in talent and technology, consistent with its commitment to bring to bear industry-leading group benefits, group retirement and HR solutions to each client engagement, delivered by its best-in-class consultants across its national platform.”

Post-acquisition, the company will be continued to be headed by Goldberg and the existing senior leadership team. The company will also continue operating from its corporate office located in Winnipeg, Manitoba, while maintaining more than 40 offices across Canada.

The deal, which is subject to court and regulatory approvals, and meeting of customary closing conditions, is expected to be completed in Q1 2021.