Intellectual property (IP) services group IPH (ASX: IPH) has bolstered its Canadian operations with the acquisition of ROBIC for CAD$ 110.6 million ($124 million), marking the company’s third buy in the country in a little over a year.
The cash-and-scrip deal for will see IPH buy ROBIC’s IP services agency which has filed more than 3,000 patents and 1,500 trademarks for its clients in 2022.
IPH says the acquisition will be earnings-per-share accretive, on an underlying basis, and brings into the company’s fold one of Canada’s leading IP firms and the largest in Quebec, with a team of approximately 220 staff located in offices in Montreal and Quebec City.
The acquisition of ROBIC, which was established in 1892, comes on the heels of IPH’s buyout of Canada’s Smart & Biggar in October last year and Ridout & Maybee in September this year as the Australian company pursues growth opportunities in secondary IP markets.
“The acquisition of ROBIC further consolidates our position in the Canadian market, following the successful acquisitions of Smart & Biggar and Ridout & Maybee over the past year,” says IPH’s CEO Dr Andrew Blattman.
“This transaction is consistent with our strategy to grow our presence in key secondary IP jurisdictions and supports our vision to be the leading IP services group in secondary IP markets.
“ROBIC is a high quality business and we look forward to welcoming them to the IPH group and the positive opportunities this provides for clients and staff as part of the wider IPH network.”
IPH is paying about CAD$68.3 million ($76 million) in cash plus the issue of six million new IPH shares for $6.91 each, totalling about CAD$36.8 million ($41 million), to finances the deal. The company’s shares were trading 3c lower at $6.84 at 11.34am (AEDT).
The shares, which will remain in escrow for two years, represent about 2 per cent of existing shares on issue.
“Joining the IPH group will bolster our international service offering while enabling us to invest in and grow our business locally,” says ROBIC’s executive committee member Dario Pietrantonio.
“We look forward to continuing to support our clients in Canada and around the world with all their intellectual property needs, now with the backing of the IPH group, and are equally excited about the career opportunities this announcement opens up for our people.”
The acquisition is expected to settle in mid-December.
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