Ancestry.com LLC, the world's largest family history website helping users trace their heritage, is exploring a sale that could value it at between $2.5 billion and $3 billion, including debt, according to people familiar with the matter.
Permira Advisers LLC, the buyout firm that owns most of privately held Ancestry, has hired investment banks to run an auction for the company, the people said this week.Permira Advisers LLC, purchased Ancestry.com back in October, 2012, just over two years ago. That purchase took Ancestry.com private and moved its ownership to Europe.
The rest of the Reuters article gives some insight into the profitability of Ancestry.com. Here is another quote from the article:
Based in Provo, Utah, Ancestry has a database of more than 15 billion historical records and more than 2.1 million paying subscribers. Subscription fees accounted for 83 percent of its total revenue of $619.6 million last year.
In addition to offering genealogical data, Ancestry provides a DNA service that allows customers to discover their genetic ethnicity and find relatives with a common ancestral match.
Permira outbid other private equity firms to take Ancestry private in 2012 for $1.6 billion. Ancestry's subscription revenues have grown to $553.8 million last year from $334.6 million in 2012.
Ancestry's adjusted earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization were $214.8 million in 2014, according to its most recent annual report.I guess we can begin speculating about whether or not a sale will happen and if so, what effect it might have on the operation of the website and further, the partnership agreement with FamilySearch.org.