Dutch HR Giant to Acquire Monster for $429M

The takeover by Randstad NV ends Monster's independence after it struggled to compete with the likes of LinkedIn.
Matthew HellerAugust 9, 2016

Monster Worldwide has agreed to be acquired by Netherlands-based staffing company Randstad NV for $429 million, ending the independence of an online recruitment pioneer that has struggled to compete with the likes of LinkedIn.

The companies said Tuesday that Randstad would pay $3.40 a share for Monster, a 23% premium to its closing stock price on Monday. In 2000, Monster, which went public soon after being founded in 1999, had a share price of over $91 and a market cap of nearly $8 billion.

Randstad, which ranks itself as the world’s second-largest, human-resources services provider, generated revenue of 19.2 billion euros ($21.3 billion) in 2015, but only 4.7 billion euros of that came from North America. Manpower is the U.S. market leader.

“With its industry leading technology platform and easy to use digital, social and mobile solutions, Monster is a natural complement to Randstad,” Jacques van den Broek, the Dutch firm’s CEO, said in a news release.

Randstad also recently acquired an Italian recruiting agency and a Japanese temporary-staffing provider. “Although Adecco and Manpower are Randstad’s traditional rivals, the Monster acquisition appears calculated to counter a different sort of competitor: LinkedIn, which was recently acquired by Microsoft,” Reuters said.

Monster is known primarily for its mid-level jobs listings and database of job-seekers’ resumes. As VentureBeat reports, Monster’s concept of resume-based job hunting has been “surpassed by things like LinkedIn’s social networking profile approach.”

For the second quarter, Monster also announced Tuesday, revenue fell 10% to $150.9 million, a far cry from the $1 billion in sales posted in 2011.

“Joining Randstad provides a unique opportunity to accelerate our ability to connect more people to more jobs,” Monster CEO Tim Yates said. “Together with Randstad, Monster will be better positioned to fulfill our core mission, and our employees will benefit from becoming part of a larger, more diversified company.

But VentureBeat said the second-quarter earnings report was “the latest evidence of a company in a downward spiral, one that probably had little choice but to sell itself.”