ITE Group has announced that it plans to dispose of ITE Expo LLC, the operating company for 56 of the Group’s events in Russia.
The events, which comprise a significant portion of ITE Group’s non-core assets in Russia, will be taken over by Shtab-Expo LLC.
ITE retains 16 core events in Russia, which have international exhibitors and visitors. These events will form part of a new legal entity, ITE Expo International LLC. Among the core events are MosBuild, WorldFood Moscow, YugAgro and MITT.
The move follows ITE’s acquisition of the majority of Ascential’s exhibition business earlier this year, which gave the company a “much more balanced portfolio, no only by product but also by geography,” according to CEO Mark Shashoua. The business historically has had strong platforms in countries like Russia, India, Turkey and China, but there has been uncertainty in the Russian market after US-imposed sanctions early in 2018.
Among the regional non-core events being disposed of are VacuumTech Expo, Stomatology St Petersburg, and Jewellery Salon Krasnodar. Non-core events in Russia generated approximately £12m for the financial year ending September 2017.
The directors intend to use the proceeds from this disposal for general corporate and working capital purposes. Whilst the disposal is expected to be marginally dilutive to earnings, management expect its overall, and in particular the focus on core events in Russia, will exceed this short-term dilution.
Mark Shashoua, CEO of ITE Group (pictured), said: “The proposed sale is a milestone in delivering a key pillar of our Transformation and Growth Programme – to actively manage our portfolio. These regional events had previously been separated into a different business unit from the international core business and so this disposal will simplify operations significantly.
“By selling this portfolio of smaller, lower-growth regional Russian events we will be able to focus our time and investment on our internationally-focused core shows, which have a much greater potential to deliver sustainable growth.”
Mayfield Merger Strategies brokered the deal.