It is plain that Mr. Hassan realized that he needs to focus his efforts — for Warburg Pincus — to be sure that the investment the Warburg firm made, in taking Bausch & Lomb private, back in 2007, ends in the black. That is almost certainly the primary reason why he is dropping the Avon independent chairman’s seat (in my opinion, of course).
Recall that prior to year end 2012, he was pushing the notion that he could sell B + L to a strategic or financial buyer, privately, for around $10 billion. At that price, Warburg Pincus would have shown a nice gain on its risked capital. Unfortunately, no bidder shared his enthusiasm, at that price.
Now it’s time to see whether Mr. Hassan can “get ‘er done” — one more time. Me? I wouldn’t bet the ranch on it. But that’s what makes a horse race. From today’s Reuters story — do go read it all:
. . . .[Avon] said on Friday that longtime board member Fred Hassan resigned from its board to focus on his other professional commitments. . . .
Hassan, who joined Avon’s board in 1999, is nonexecutive chairman of Bausch + Lomb, a managing director and partner at private equity firm Warburg Pincus LLC and a board member of Time Warner Inc. . . .
Hassan had only been Avon’s nonexecutive chairman since the beginning of the year, taking on the role when former CEO Andrea Jung left her role as executive chairman of the board more than a year earlier than planned. . . .
We will keep you posted — if/when the B + L IPO is priced. My bet is that it will price below $29.11— as I’ve earlier explained. Just search B + L in the box on the top-left of the blog page.