Unbelievably, Nano Dimension has sent Stratasys yet another takeover offer.
A Series of Unyielding Bids
For several weeks now, Nano Dimension has been persistently and publicly extending a series of escalating takeover bids to Stratasys, each being a dollar per share greater than the last. The rationale, according to Nano Dimension, is their belief that Stratasys’ current management is underperforming and that they could significantly elevate the company’s performance. Nano Dimension envisions this new amalgamation as “Nano Stratasys”.
The takeover efforts have taken an unusual course, climaxing with daily YouTube videos from Nano Dimension’s CEO, Yoav Stern, scolding Stratasys for refusing their offer. The 3D printing world has never seen anything like Stern’s “promos”, which carry a resemblance to professional wrestling.
Shifting Strategies Amid Rejections
One could have reasonably expected these unrequested bids from Nano Dimension to dissolve, considering their previous proposal suggested utilizing all of Nano Dimension’s liquid assets to acquire 100% of the Stratasys shares. Like all preceding bids, that one was courteously declined by Stratasys.
In a surprising turn of events, Nano Dimension has proposed yet another bid to Stratasys. The question arises: how could they proceed if they had allocated all their cash for the previous bid?
Nano Dimension’s recent approach differs from its previous ones. This time they propose to acquire a 53-55% stake in Stratasys shares, not the entirety. This new strategy allows Nano Dimension to invest less of their cash reserves: the current bid is about US$660M, roughly half of their prior bid.
Despite proposing to acquire less than full ownership, this new offer would still grant Nano Dimension control over Stratasys, as they would own approximately 70% of the company’s shares if the deal went through. Presumably, Nano Dimension’s management would then overhaul Stratasys, reflecting their previous statements about the company.
An Irrelevant Proposal Amid New Developments
However, this recent proposal may prove to be inconsequential. That’s because Stratasys recently announced a merger with Desktop Metal, forming a much larger entity that would dominate a significant segment of technology.
It is quite likely that talks between Desktop Metal and Stratasys were in progress months prior, possibly even before Nano Dimension’s peculiar takeover bids came into the picture. This context makes the rejection of their bids less surprising.
As for the latest Nano Dimension bid, the timing is indeed odd. Why would Nano Dimension continue to propose a takeover that has lost its relevance?
I suspect it’s a matter of timing. The Nano Dimension bid likely arrived just before the Desktop Metal announcement. Interestingly, Stratasys chose to publicly consider the bid the day after the Desktop Metal announcement. There could be a reason behind this sequence of events.
Conclusion: An Expected Rejection
Regardless, it is virtually certain that Stratasys will deliver a very polite “NO” to Nano Dimension later this week, which should finally bring this saga to a close.