Natus Medical to go private in $1.2B private equity acquisition deal

Two decades after hitting the Nasdaq as a publicly traded company in 2001, Natus Medical is saying goodbye to all that.

The devicemaker has agreed to be acquired by healthcare-focused private equity firm ArchiMed in a deal that would value it at about $1.2 billion and remove it from public trading, Natus said Monday.

The company’s board of directors has already unanimously approved the agreement and is recommending shareholders follow suit. Pending shareholder approval and other regulatory requirements, the acquisition is expected to be finalized sometime in the third quarter of this year.

“Our nearly 1,400 Natus teammates remain committed to advance the standard of care and improve outcomes and quality of life for patients affected by disorders of the brain, neural pathways and eight sensory nervous systems,” Natus CEO Thomas Sullivan said in a statement. “ArchiMed’s mix of operational, medical, scientific and financial expertise will help us continue our mission to serve our customers while delivering immediate value to shareholders.”

Under the terms of the deal, the shareholders would receive $33.50 in cash for each of their shares of Natus’ common stock. France-based ArchiMed will fund the purchase using a combination of equity financing from its affiliated funds and debt financing, all of which is already fully committed.

That sticker price represents a premium of almost 29% compared to the $26.05 closing price April 14, the last full day of trading before the proposal was announced. In fact, Natus’ stock price hasn’t crossed the $30 threshold since the early days of 2020.

Once the markets opened Monday morning, the company’s stock jumped straight to $33.50 before continuing a slow climb upward to about $33.75.

When the acquisition is completed, Natus will become a private company, with its shares no longer listed on the Nasdaq or any other market. It originally went public in July 2001 in a $55 million initial public offering.

Founded in the late 1980s, Wisconsin-based Natus has developed a wide range of medical devices and software systems spanning neurological, newborn and hearing care.

In the acquisition announcement, Natus offered a preview of its first-quarter earnings report, which is slated to be released in full May 5. For the first three months of 2022, the company took in revenues of $119.8 million, just over 4% higher than its take in the first quarter of last year.

And while Natus said it had to shell out $3.4 million in “extraordinary supply chain costs” linked to semiconductor demand during the period, it still ended the quarter with no debt and $84 million in cash—up from the $75.6 million it had in cash to kick off the year.