Work Service attracts Gi Group as new majority shareholder
On 24th August this year, Work Service, Poland’s largest HR company providing innovative solutions in the field of human resources and Gi Group, one of the world’s leading staffing companies, completed the transaction under which Gi Group acquired a controlling interest in Work Service.
Through the transaction, our Group strengthened its position in the market for HR services in Central and Eastern Europe. At the same time, Work Service has a new shareholder with one of the leading positions in the international market for HR services, which will enable it to achieve financial stability, while further developing its business activities and services.
Thibault Lefebvre, Regional Head Central-Eastern Europe at Gi Group has been appointed as the new President of Work Service Management Board; Iwona Szmitkowska, already President of Work Service Management Board, is the new Vice President; Nicola Dell’Edera, Global Chief Financial Officer of Gi Group, has been appointed as the new Vice President of Work Service.
The transaction finalises the process of acquiring a financial or strategic investor announced by Work Service in March last year, reviewing strategic options. As a result, on 13th February this year, Work Service signed an investment agreement with Gi Group, which set out its conditions for acquiring a majority shareholding. Its completion was preceded by confirmatory due diligence, obtaining the consent of the anti-trust authorities, and agreement with our company, shareholders, banks and bondholders on the final transaction documentation. Despite the pandemic, which has changed the economic situation and the global labour market, the transaction concluded on 24th August this year is based on all the main assumptions previously agreed upon.
Under the several agreements, Gi Group acquired the majority of Work Service shares and, in accordance with current regulation, will launch a tender offer for at least 66% of total issued shares. Moreover, our Group will also provide the financial support necessary to enable Work Service to achieve its business objectives with an adequate financial structure.
Work Service undertook to call for a General Meeting of Shareholders to propose the increase of the share capital by at least PLN 30 million to a maximum of PLN 105 million at PLN 0.39 per share.
Our investment in Work Service is a strategic complement to our existing activities in the area of temporary and permanent employment, search and selection, HR counselling and training, and complementary services.
Companies belonging to Work Service that are active in Poland, Czech Republic, Slovakia and Hungary, and Gi Group will operate independently in the near future. The objective, however, is to develop and implement an optimal synergy model to ensure efficiency of operations, development of complementary services and professional customer service.
“The concluded agreement is the first, formal and very important step. We will look at the possibilities and scope of cooperation, and the integration of our companies’ activities in order to ensure the highest quality of service provision,” concluded Iwona Szmitkowska.
Work Service advisors in the process were: Blackwood Capital Group, PwC Advisory, and Mrowiec Fialek and Partners Law Firm. Gi Group advisors in the process were: Baker McKenzie as an international legal advisor with the support of Gi Group’s internal Global Legal Department, M&A and Global Finance Department, Deloitte and Core Sp. z o.o.