Altus Group Limited
TSX : AIF

Altus Group Limited

November 21, 2014 06:00 ET

Altus Group to Become One of the Largest Property Tax Advisors in the US Through Acquisition of SC&H Group's State and Local Tax Practice

Strengthens Capabilities to Service Large Multi-National Clients

TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwired - Nov. 21, 2014) - Altus Group Limited ("Altus Group" or "the Company") (TSX:AIF) announced today that it intends to acquire SC&H Group Inc.'s ("SC&H") State and Local Tax ("SALT") consulting practice, a leading provider of specialized state and local tax and advisory services in the United States ("US"). The acquisition of SC&H's SALT practice will immediately increase the Company's market share in US property tax services, making it one of the largest property tax advisors in the US and globally, best equipped to service large multi-national clients with operations in Canada, the US, and the United Kingdom ("UK").

Highlights:

  • Immediately expands market share and geographic reach in the US, expanding Altus Group as one of the largest property tax advisors globally

  • Strengthens expertise with approximately 93 additional professionals, adding significant state-specific domain specialty

  • Strengthens property tax offerings with complementary and new business lines

  • Diversifies client base across wide spectrum of industry sectors, adding to growing list of Fortune 500 clients

  • Immediately financially accretive to adjusted earnings per share ("EPS")

"The acquisition of SC&H Group's State and Local Tax consultancy complements our strategy of expanding our property tax services in the US market, which we believe represents a compelling opportunity for growth, and allows us to better serve our large multi-national, cross-border clients," said Bob Courteau, CEO of Altus Group. "The added scale in the US positions us as one of the largest property tax advisors globally, and enhances our global leadership with expertise to serve clients in Canada, the US and the UK."

The SC&H SALT practice is comprised of approximately 93 experienced professionals specializing in six different areas of state and local tax and advisory services, offering solutions that enable clients to proactively manage their tax liabilities, recover overpayments, address exposure risks, and implement strategies that deliver meaningful benefits. With employees in Maryland, Virginia, Georgia, Arizona, Colorado, North Carolina, Pennsylvania and Florida, SC&H's SALT consultancy will broaden Altus Group's geographical reach in the US, especially in the eastern part of the country. Additionally, the acquisition will add three new business lines to Altus Group's real estate and personal property tax offering, including: Location and Incentive Strategies; Transaction Tax; and Unclaimed Property Consulting. With over 20 years of operations, SC&H's SALT practice has gained substantial market share in the US property tax market, serving leading companies across different business sectors and including more than 100 Fortune 500 companies. The addition of SC&H's SALT employees will more than double Altus Group's US Tax team to approximately 165 employees.

"We are very pleased to welcome SC&H Group's State and Local Tax practice, whose exceptional track record and unparalleled reputation in the industry is a perfect fit for our global Property Tax strategy," said Jim Derbyshire, Global President of Altus Group's Property Tax and Business Rates business unit. "More importantly, in a business where people are our greatest assets, we're extremely pleased to have strengthened our team with some of the industry's most talented state and local experts. Their expertise in the US market is second to none, which will significantly enhance our capabilities in the US market."

"Joining Altus Group represents an exciting opportunity to accelerate our strategic growth initiatives, which we believe will prove to be beneficial for both our employees and clients," added Todd Workman, Managing Partner at SC&H State and Local Tax. "Altus Group's global scale, complementary advisory services and innovative software and data solutions will enhance our offerings to our valued clients."

The acquisition is valued at approximately US$38 million and will be funded through a combination of cash, bank debt and equity. It is expected to be immediately accretive to adjusted EPS. In 2014, SC&H SALT's annual revenues are estimated to be approximately US$22 million and normalized EBITDA approximately US$6 million, representing EBITDA margins of approximately 27%.

The closing of this acquisition is subject to certain customary conditions, including the satisfactory completion of due diligence, the execution of definitive documents and receipt of all necessary regulatory approvals. Subject to the fulfillment of these conditions, the transaction is expected to close on or about December 1, 2014. There can be no assurances that the transaction will be completed or completed on the terms described herein.

About Altus Group Limited

Altus Group is a leading provider of independent commercial real estate consulting and advisory services, software and data solutions. We operate five Business Units, bringing together years of experience, a broad range of expertise and technology into one comprehensive platform: Research, Valuation and Advisory; ARGUS Software; Property Tax; Cost Consulting and Project Management; and Geomatics. Our suite of services and software enables clients to analyze, gain insight and recognize value on their real estate investments.

We have approximately 2,300 employees located in offices around the world, including North America, Europe and Asia Pacific. Our clients include some of the world's largest real estate industry participants, including financial institutions, investment funds, insurance companies, accounting firms, real estate organizations, real estate investment trusts, healthcare institutions, industrial companies, foreign and domestic private investors, real estate developers and lenders, governmental institutions and firms in the oil and gas sector.

The Company is focused on creating sustainable shareholder value that generates long-term returns by targeting organic and accretive growth while providing quarterly dividend payments of $0.15 per share. Altus Group's securities are traded on the TSX under the symbols AIF and AIF.DB.A.

For more information on Altus Group, please visit: www.altusgroup.com.

Forward-Looking Information

Certain information in this press release may constitute "forward-looking information" within the meaning of applicable securities legislation. All information contained in this press release, other than statements of current and historical fact, is forward-looking information. Forward-looking information includes, but is not limited to, the proposed acquisition of SALT and the operational and financial prospects related thereto; Altus Group's business and operating initiatives; and its expectations of future performance for its various business units. Generally, forward-looking information can be identified by use of words such as "may", "will", "expect", "believe", "plan", "would", "could" and other similar terminology. All of the forward-looking information in this press release is qualified by this cautionary statement.

Forward-looking information is not, and cannot be, a guarantee of future results or events. Forward-looking information is based on, among other things, opinions, assumptions, estimates and analyses that, while considered reasonable by Altus Group at the date the forward-looking information is provided, inherently are subject to significant risks, uncertainties, contingencies and other factors that may cause actual results, performance or achievements, industry results or events to be materially different from those expressed or implied by the forward-looking information. The material factors or assumptions that were identified and were applied by Altus Group in drawing conclusions or making forecasts or projections set out in the forward-looking information include, but are not limited to: the successful execution of Altus Group's business strategies (including the success of its initiatives related to SALT); consistent and stable economic conditions or conditions in the financial markets; consistent and stable legislation in the various countries in which Altus Group operates; no disruptive changes in the technology environment; the opportunity to acquire accretive businesses; the successful integration of Altus Group's businesses; and the continued availability of qualified professionals. Please consult Altus Group's most recent regulatory filings on SEDAR for more information on the Company's forward-looking statements.

Given these risks, uncertainties and other factors, investors should not place undue reliance on forward-looking information as a prediction of actual results. The forward-looking information reflects management's current expectations and beliefs regarding future events and operating performance and is based on information currently available to management. Although Altus Group has attempted to identify important factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from the forward-looking information contained herein, there are other factors that could cause results not to be as anticipated, estimated or intended. The forward-looking information contained herein is current as of the date of this press release and, except as required under applicable law, Altus Group does not undertake to update or revise it to reflect new events or circumstances. Additionally, Altus Group undertakes no obligation to comment on analyses, expectations or statements made by third parties in respect of Altus Group, its financial or operating results, or its securities.

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