April 22, 2024

Major Wall Street Banks Explore $8 Billion Financing for DocuSign Buyout in Potential Record-Breaking Deal

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In a potential blockbuster deal, Wall Street powerhouses, including JPMorgan Chase & Co. and Bank of America Corp., are reportedly in discussions to provide up to $8 billion in financing for a buyout of DocuSign Inc., valuing the electronic signature platform at approximately $13 billion. The buyout, if successful, could mark the largest leveraged buyout (LBO) of the year, with private equity firms Bain Capital and Hellman & Friedman vying for control.

Jefferies Financial Group Inc. and Deutsche Bank AG are also among the financial institutions mulling over participating in the financing arrangement for the DocuSign buyout, sources familiar with the matter disclosed. While discussions are ongoing, and details may evolve, the potential involvement of major Wall Street banks underscores the magnitude of this prospective deal.

Henry Kravis, a stalwart in the world of LBOs, has set the benchmark for such transactions, shaping the landscape from the iconic RJR Nabisco deal to subsequent endeavors. As LBO deal flow continues unabated in 2024, Wall Street banks are seemingly following Kravis’s blueprint.

The proposed buyout’s purchase price and anticipated leverage suggest that both traditional bank financing and direct lending options would necessitate the inclusion of preferred equity to successfully close the deal. Direct lenders, often capable of offering higher levels of debt, might play a crucial role in determining the final structure of the financing.

DocuSign, a leader in electronic signatures and digital transaction management, has seen increased demand for its services in a business landscape emphasizing digitalization and remote collaboration. The potential acquisition signals a strategic move by private equity firms to capitalize on DocuSign’s market position and drive further growth.

As discussions progress, attention will be keenly focused on the outcome of this high-stakes negotiation, which could redefine the landscape of major buyouts in 2024.

David Thompson
Financial Desk

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