Chipmaker NXP Planning IPO

NEW YORK/AMSTERDAM (Reuters) – Dutch semiconductor company NXP [NXP.UL], owned by private equity firms, including KKR and Silver Lake, is planning an initial public offering (IPO), a source familiar with the matter said.

A potential IPO, earlier reported by Bloomberg, could raise about $1 billion, the source said. A number of banks would handle the sale, Bloomberg reported — Morgan Stanley (MS.N), Barclays Plc (BARC.L), Credit Suisse Group AG (CSGN.VX), Deutsche Bank AG (DBKGn.DE) and Goldman Sachs Group Inc (GS.N).

NXP was spun off from Koninklijke Philips Electronics NV (PHG.AS) in 2006 in a leveraged buyout. A consortium of private equity investors, including Silver Lake and Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co (KKR.AS) bought a majority of the company.

The banks and private equity firms either declined comment, or could not be reached. NXP and Philips declined to comment.

Philips said in January its remaining 19.8 percent stake in NXP had a value of 207 million euros as of December 2009, implying a valuation for the whole company of more than one billion euros.

KKR has already written down its stake in NXP substantially, saying in December that the fair value of its investment was $75 million on a cost of $250 million.

NXP’s Chief Executive Rick Clemmer told Reuters earlier this year he expected sales to be flat to slightly higher during the first quarter, but was waiting for more clarity about the market in the second half.

Private equity firms buy companies with the aim of exiting them a few years later, either through a sale or an initial public offering. During the financial crisis, leaving investments was very difficult, but the markets have opened up recently, allowing some firms to exit.

(Reporting by Megan Davies and Jui Chakravorty in New York and Greg Roumeliotis and Harro Ten Wolde in Amsterdam; editing by Mike Peacock)