International recruitment firm Randstad announced its plans to purchase Monster Worldwide, one of the world’s leading online job boards, for $429 million in August. However, Denver's MediaNews Group, one of the nation’s largest newspaper groups and a majority Monster shareholder, is attempting to block the sale.
In a detailed letter to Monster’s Board of Directors, MNG said it did not approve of the $3.40 per share deal offered to shareholders because it represents the "textbook definition of selling at the bottom," according to TLNT. MNG proposed five changes that Monster could make that would increase share value to as much as $8 a share within the next 18 months, if the sale were postponed.
Comparing Monster to its nearest competitor, CareerBuilder — which brings in annual revenues of around $700 million currently — MNG requested that Monster focus its efforts on better marketing and a subscription-based model to increase earnings. Monster.com has not yet commented on the new development.
In response to the claims, Monster said MNG made "flawed and uninformed assumptions" and failed to offer a better alternative, according to Reuters.
The future is uncertain for Monster.com at the moment, as it faces the dilemma of either delaying the Randstad purchase and making a concerted effort to increase the market value of its stock, or getting out now. There’s no doubt that the brand will live on in some form or another.
Matt Charney at Recruiting Daily said of the acquisition, "Randstad isn’t necessarily just buying some tech partner — they’re doing a fairly traditional professional services acquisition and getting an existing book of business with recurring revenues to boot." Monster holds a lot of value not only as a job board, but as an entire suite of business tools and resources that Randstad can leverage to complete its mission.