Advance Completes Acquisition of The IRONMAN Group

Advance Publications yesterday completed its acquisition of The IRONMAN Group from Wanda Sports, bringing a close to a deal announced just as the COVID-19 pandemic was beginning.

The original transaction price of $730 million appears to have stood, based on releases from both Advance and former owner Wanda Sports Group. However, Wanda Sports noted that "net proceeds are expected to be in the range of US$380 million," as Wanda Sports used proceeds to "repay the principal amount of US$240 million and related interest and fees outstanding under its existing 364-day facility."

As part of the transaction, Andrew Messick resigned from his Director position at Wanda Sports Group. He remains CEO of The IRONMAN Group. Additionally, the transaction sees Jesse Du Bey return to the IRONMAN Board of Directors. Du Bey was an instrumental part of Providence Equity Partners duration of ownership of the then-World Triathlon Corporation.

Wanda Sports Group remains IRONMAN's partner in the production of IRONMAN, IRONMAN 70.3, Rock n' Roll, and other endurance sports events in China.

Advance's portfolio is expansive, including but not limited to Condé Nast, Advance Local, Stage Entertainment, American City Business Journals, Leaders Group, Turnitin, 1010data and Pop. Including the newly acquired IRONMAN Group's workers, Advance employs over 17,000 people across 29 countries. It is also one of the largest shareholders of Charter Communications and Discovery.