Cannae Holdings, Senator Investment Group Propose to Acquire CoreLogic

Wall Street Journal

Dave Sebastian

Jun 26, 2020

Cannae Holdings Inc. CNNE -1.13% and Senator Investment Group LP are proposing to buy CoreLogic Inc. in a deal that would value the financial services intelligence company at $5.16 billion.

The unsolicited bid, at $65 a share in cash, represents a 37% premium over CoreLogic’s stock price on June 15, after which research notes about the trading volume and share-price movements triggered speculation, Cannae Chief Executive Richard Massey and Senator partner Quentin Koffey said in a letter to CoreLogic’s board Friday. CoreLogic provides data and analysis related to properties. Shares closed on Thursday at $52.93.

CoreLogic shares rose about 25% Friday afternoon to $66.35. CoreLogic said it would review the proposal, which it wasn’t aware of before the letter’s disclosure on Friday.

CoreLogic shares rose about 25% Friday afternoon to $66.35.

Messrs. Massey and Koffey said CoreLogic won’t achieve its full potential under its current strategy.

“We were disappointed to see the company take the highly unusual step of raising quarterly guidance five days before the end of the quarter and suspect this was a defensive move in light of the high trading volume and knowledge of our interest in the company,” Messrs. Massey and Koffey said.

The two firms are calling for CoreLogic to hire advisers and form a special committee to negotiate on the transaction. They will take necessary steps, including calling a special meeting, if CoreLogic’s board isn’t willing to engage, Messrs. Massey and Koffey said.

Cannae is a holding company with investments in various sectors, including restaurants, health-care services and financial services.

Messrs. Massey and Koffey said the companies aim to improve operating efficiency and allocation of capital resources at CoreLogic through the transaction.

The Irvine, Calif., company on Thursday raised its second-quarter revenue target as it said it gained market share and operating leverage due to higher U.S. mortgage rate volumes.

Gordon Haskett Research Advisors had noted the rise in CoreLogic’s trading volume earlier this month, which suggested to the research firm that a deal or offer was incoming.

“We can’t say for sure whether $65 is the right number or not but it does seem to be in the right neighborhood,” the firm said in a note Friday.