TORONTO — Aimia Inc. says it has acquired a 10 per cent stake in Chinese outdoor advertising firm Clear Media Ltd. for $75 million.
The move comes as the company works to transform itself from a loyalty rewards company into an investment holding firm.
Aimia says it has acquired 58.8 million common shares in Clear Media, including 19.6 million previously held by clients of Mittleman Investment Management which is also Aimia’s largest shareholder.
It says the investment was made in anticipation of a pending deal by Clear Media’s controlling shareholder, Clear Channel Outdoor, to sell its 50.9 per cent stake to Ever Harmonic Global Ltd.
Clear Media CEO Han Zi Jing holds a 40 per cent stake in Ever Harmonic, while Ant Financial holds 30 per cent. Other shareholders include JCDecaux SA at 23 per cent and JIC Capital Management Ltd. with seven per cent.
The acquisition was announced as Aimia reported a first-quarter loss of $9.6 million or 14 cents per share compared with a profit of $1.05 billion or $6.85 per share a year ago when its results were boosted by the sale of its Aeroplan business to Air Canada.
This report by The Canadian Press was first published May 13, 2020.
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