Australia’s Burson Auto to raise $200 mln in April IPO , says source-Reuters

(Reuters) – Burson Auto Parts, Australia’s biggest trade supplier of car parts, plans to raise A$220 million ($201.22 million) through an initial public offering (IPO) that would be the second most valuable so far this year, a person familiar with the offer said on Wednesday.

The flotation comes as private equity firms are increasingly looking to a buoyant sharemarket as a viable exit opportunity. Burson is owned by Quadrant Private Equity, and the IPO represents 74 percent of the company’s shares. In mid-2011, Quadrant bought a 75 percent stake in Burson for A$148 million.

Quadrant will keep a 19.9 percent stake after the IPO to benefit from Australia’s A$5.1 billion after-market auto parts industry, according to the person who declined to be identified due to the confidentiality of the matter.

A group of Burson founders and managers will also retain 6 percent in the company, which will have a total value of A$298 million including the unlisted portion. UBS AG and Morgan Stanley are sponsors of the IPO.

The Burson offer would be the largest since auto leaser SG Fleet Group Ltd raised A$450 million via a March IPO.

TPG and The Carlyle Group have been considering an A$5 billion IPO for hospital company Healthscope while CVC Asia Pacific Ltd and UBS AG have been angling to float Mantra Hotels in the next few months.

Burson, which supplies parts to about 30,000 workshops around Australia, had told investors it planned to expand from 114 stores to 175 stores in five years.

The company is negotiating with Automotive Holdings Group to buy several retail stores in Western Australia state, the person familiar with the IPO said.

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