GTCR Investment is bidding for Cision, offering a cash premium of more than 50 percent for the Swedish provider of PR software and services.

Mark Anderson, GTCR managing director and board member of its Blue Canyon Holdings takeover vehicle, believes technology will become a “more critical component of PR workflow.”

He supports Cision’s “digital first” strategy and is eager to work with its management to extend its “leadership position by investing in innovative new product development.”

Cision’s board, which had been shopping the company to former suitors with the help of Lazard, recommends the Blue Canyon offer.

Hans-Erik Andersson, Cision chairman, said the board considers GTCR a “suitable owner” committed to growing its business and investing in enhanced innovation.”

The acceptance period for the takeover begins Feb. 28 and runs through March 28.

Settlement will be around April 7.

Revenue Declines in Q4

Cision reported fourth quarter 2013 revenue declined 11.3% to around $33M as the company felt the effects of divesting its print monitoring business and a continued decline in broadcast monitoring.

Operating profit fell nearly 60% to about $2M.

CEO Peter Granat said the company's transition to primarily digital services is "nearly complete," adding that the company made "significant" investments in sales and marketing in the second half of 2013. He said with the divestment and financial improvements behind the company, Cision will focus on growing its customer base this year and adding services.

Currency effects and one-time personnel cuts, mostly in Canada, also cost Cision about $1.8M in Q4.

Cision rolled out a new content marketing suite in Q3 and forged alliances with sponsored content networks Outbrain and Taboola.