UBS and Citigroup last Tuesday launched syndication of a $540 million senior secured deal to back the $1.05 billion acquisition of Advantage Sales & Marketing by J.W. Childs and the buyout arm of Merrill Lynch, ML Global Private Equity. The deal comprises a six-year, $60 million revolver and a seven-year, $480 million term loan. Pricing on both tranches is LIBOR plus 2 1/2%.
Based in Washington, D.C., Advantage is one of the largest sales and marketing agencies in the U.S. Advantage specializes in outsourced sales, merchandising, category management and marketing services to manufacturers, suppliers and producers of food products and consumer packaged goods. Calls to J.W. Childs and ML Global were not returned. A spokesman at Advantage declined comment. Bankers at UBS and Citigroup did not return calls.