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Hudson Global Announces Plan for Strategic Divestitures; Will Focus on Global RPO Business

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by John Grau | Published January 9, 2018

NEW YORK, Dec. 17, 2017 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Hudson Global, Inc. (HSON) (“Hudson”), a leading global talent solutions company, today announced it has entered into definitive purchase agreements to sell its recruitment and talent management operations in Europe and Asia Pacific to strategic buyers in three transactions. Hudson intends to focus on its growing, global recruitment process outsourcing (“RPO”) business going forward. Under the terms of the agreements, Hudson will receive estimated proceeds of $41.2 million in cash, subject to adjustment.

Summary of Transactions

  • Sale of Hudson`s recruitment and talent management operations in Benelux to Value Plus NV, in a management buyout led by Ivan De Witte, chief executive officer, Hudson Benelux, for $24.7 million in estimated net proceeds, subject to customary transaction adjustments.
  • Sale of Hudson`s recruitment and talent management operations in the rest of Europe to Morgan Philips Group SA (“Morgan Philips”), for $10.5 million in estimated net proceeds, subject to customary working capital and transaction adjustments.
  • Sale of Hudson`s recruitment and talent management operations in Asia Pacific to Apache Group Holdings Pty Limited (“Apache Group”), in a management buyout led by Mark Steyn, chief executive officer, Hudson Asia Pacific, for $6.0 million in estimated net proceeds, subject to customary transaction adjustments. The buyer will assume the company`s short-term debt in Asia Pacific, which was $6.3 million as of September 30, 2017.

“We are excited to focus on the RPO business going forward and pleased to have reached these agreements for the sale of our recruitment and talent management businesses,” said Stephen Nolan, chief executive officer at Hudson. “This decision is a result of a lengthy and thorough review of our strategic alternatives and our desire to focus on the growing RPO business. We believe these transactions are in the best interest of all stakeholders and believe these transactions will allow each of our business lines to thrive with more resources, investment and dedicated management than in our existing structure. I believe our teams will continue to have success under the leadership of Ivan De Witte in Belgium, Morgan Philips in Europe and Mark Steyn in Asia Pacific.”

A Strategic Focus on RPO

  • We are excited to operate as an RPO-focused company and look forward to continuing to deliver outstanding service to our clients around the globe through our regional RPO operations in the Americas, Asia Pacific and EMEA
  • Hudson believes it has a strong value proposition in RPO and has a deep history in this business going back over 18 years as one of the first RPO providers in the industry
  • Hudson RPO delivers high-level, professional solutions around the globe
  • RPO is a dynamic business with strong growth history and growth prospects globally
  • RPO is less capital intensive than recruitment, requiring less real estate and lighter back-office support
  • RPO has longer-term contracts and is less cyclical than recruitment
  • As of September 30, 2017, Hudson RPO delivered $58.0 million in revenue and $41.6 million in gross margin in the last twelve months
  • Proceeds from the transactions will be used for investment in the RPO business, reduction in support staff costs, other general corporate purposes and continuing the existing share repurchase program


The transactions are expected to close in the first half of 2018, subject to the approval of the majority of the outstanding shares of Hudson and satisfaction of customary closing conditions. Hudson plans to file a proxy statement with the Securities and Exchange Commission seeking shareholder approval for the sale of substantially all of its assets as a result of the proposed sales. The Board of Directors of Hudson has unanimously approved the definitive agreements for the proposed sales and will recommend the approval of sales of substantially all of Hudson`s assets to Hudson`s shareholders. None of these transactions are contingent on any other transaction in order to close.

Transitional Services Agreement

Until the close of the sale, all of Hudson`s operations, including RPO, recruitment and talent management, will continue to operate as they do today. Once the sale process is completed, a transitional services agreement will allow each division to work together to continue delivering services to clients throughout 2018, to avoid any service disruptions.

Net Operating Losses and Stockholder Rights Agreement

Hudson had net NOLs for U.S. Federal tax purposes of approximately $326.3 million as of December 31, 2016. In order to protect the value of the NOLs, the company has a rights agreement in place that limits beneficial ownership of Hudson common stock to 4.99%. In addition, stockholders who already own more than 4.99% of Hudson common stock may not acquire additional shares without board approval.


Foley & Lardner LLP is serving as legal counsel to Hudson.

About Hudson

Hudson is a global talent solutions company with expertise in leadership and specialized recruitment, recruitment process outsourcing, talent management and contracting solutions. We help our clients and candidates succeed by leveraging our expertise, deep industry and market knowledge, and proprietary assessment tools and techniques. Operating around the globe through relationships with millions of specialized professionals, we bring an unparalleled ability to match talent with opportunities by assessing, recruiting, developing and engaging the best and brightest people for our clients. We combine broad geographic presence, world-class talent solutions and a tailored, consultative approach to help businesses and professionals achieve higher performance and outstanding results.

About Value Plus NV

Value Plus NV is a newly formed company led by current Hudson Belgium CEO Ivan De Witte and an MBO team from the Hudson Belgium management group. The business is a market leader in Belgium, providing innovative talent solutions to clients. The business is led by an experienced team of tenured industry professionals and was founded by expert entrepreneur and pioneer in talent management Ivan De Witte in 1982. Hudson Belgium has a team of 250 people, including consultants, researchers, R&D and support staff.

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