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Randstad to buy US rival Monster for $429 million

Randstad Holding NV, the world's second-largest staffing company said it plans to acquire Monster Worldwide, the dotcom-era survivor that owns Monsterboard and Jobs.com, for $429 million in cash and assumed debt.

For Randstad, which has struggled to grow in the United States, the purchase fits into a series of acquisitions to expand into online recruiting.

Randstad is bidding $3.40 in cash per Monster share, a 23 percent premium to Monster's closing price Monday.

The Monster bid follows Randstad's $100 million purchase of U.S. startup RiseSmart in the U.S. September.

Though Randstad has grown to rival global number one Adecco in market capitalization, it trails U.S. market leader Manpower in North America.

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.

Randstad CEO Jacques van den Broek said that in addition to its strong U.S. name recognition, Monster brings a new technology platform and mobile phone presence to the Dutch-based company.

Monster is known primarily for its mid-level jobs listings and its database of job-seekers' resumes.

Photographer | Collection | Getty Images

Shares in Randstad slipped 3 percent after the announcement of the deal before recovering to trade 0.4 percent lower at 39.25 euros against a flat Amsterdam share index at 0923 GMT.

In July, Ranstad reported second quarter earnings before interest, taxation and amortisation (EBITA) of 240 million euros ($264 million), up from 215 million euros in the same period a year earlier. However, its shares have suffered recently on concerns that Britain's vote to leave the European Union will hurt profits.

Randstad was advised on the deal by Wells Fargo and Jones Day acted as legal adviser. Monster's financial adviser was Evercore and its legal adviser was Dechert.