EXFO’s Lamonde again turns away VIAVI approach

July 20, 2021
As the EXFO board has noted previously, the fact that Lamonde owns controlling interest in the company and has no interest in selling to VIAVI means no deal is possible.

Viavi Solutions Inc. (NASDAQ: VIAV) announced today another offer to purchase test technology rival EXFO Inc. (TSX: EXF; NASDAQ: EXFO) – and, once again, EXFO founder, chairman, and majority shareholder Germain Lamonde reiterated that he will not sell the company at any price.

The new offer was the latest in a series of salvos from VIAVI sparked by Lamonde’s offer to take EXFO private (see “EXFO’s founder to take company private”). The most recent bid promised US$8.00 in cash per EXFO share, which VIAVI notes is 33.3% better than what Lamonde has offered and values the company at US$459 million. However, as the EXFO board has noted previously (see "EXFO’s Lamonde to VIAVI: Go away!"), the fact that Lamonde owns controlling interest in the company and has no interest in selling to VIAVI means no deal is possible.

Which has led Lamonde to wonder what VIAVI is trying to accomplish. “VIAVI knew full well I would reject any new non-binding, non-executable tentative proposal, which in my view is only intended to create distortion in the current go-private process and is simply aimed at eliminating VIAVI's main competitor – it is clearly not in the best interest of VIAVI and EXFO customers as they would end up paying much higher prices for the products we sell, having less services and no longer benefit from EXFO's incredible innovation engine,” Lamonde said in a statement issued today.

“I have been clear and unambiguous with EXFO shareholders since June 7 that they have a choice of accepting my formal offer of US$6.00 per Subordinate Voting Share or remaining a public company. My position has not changed since then and nor will it change, no matter how many times EXFO's primary competitor tries to interfere in the process for its own benefit,” Lamonde concluded.

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