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EQT Expects Offers for Kabel

Swedish buyout shop EQT is expecting three offers from potential buyers of its portfolio company Kabel Baden Wuerttemberg, Reuters reported. EQT has plans to float the cable operator, but will consider bids from private equity firms CVC and Hellman & Friedman as well as Liberty Global, Reuters said. EQT is reportedly asking for at least 3 billion euro ($4.2 billion) for the company.

(Reuters) – EQT, which has announced plans to float cable operator Kabel BW [KBWHL.UL], is still considering a sale and can expect three offers from potential buyers, sources familiar with the situation said.

EQT, which bought Kabel Baden Wuerttemberg (Kabel BW) in April 2006, will receive three binding offers by the end of this week, two people told Reuters.

Private equity firms CVC [CVC.UL] and Hellman & Friedman as well as Liberty Global (LBTYA.O), which owns larger German cable rival Unitymedia, will be submitting bids, the sources said.

EQT declined comment.

The Swedish private equity firm is asking for at least 3 billion euros ($4.2 billion), the people said.

EQT has been pursuing a dual-track strategy, but the market turmoil in the aftermath of the catastrophe in Japan may work in the bidders’ favour, as uncertainty is not beneficial for anyone preparing an initial public listing. [ID:nLDE72E26A]

“EQT will be looking at the market in the coming days,” a person close to Kabel BW said.

“EQT will take a decision on the option it will ultimately pursue in the coming days”, the people familiar with the matter said.

Kabel BW on Friday unveiled plans to float on the German stock exchange in the first half of the year and said it would provide more details of the listing in coming weeks. [ID:nLDE7292DE]

Deutsche Bank (DBKGn.DE) and JP Morgan (JPM.N) are joint global coordinators for the initial public offering (IPO). BofA Merrill Lynch (BAC.N) and Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS.L) will act as joint bookrunners.

Deutsche Bank and JP Morgan are preparing the staple financing for a potential buyout of Kabel BW, banking sources said.

The debt financing is expected to exceed a leveraged multiple of 6 times earnings, the sources said. [ID:nRLP85166a]

With EBITDA of 316 million euros in 2010, this equates to over 2 billion euros of debt. The financing is expected to consist of loans and bonds, banking sources added. (Reporting by Philipp Halstrick, Peter Maushagen, Victoria Howley, RLPC London; Writing by Nicola Leske; Editing by David Holmes) ($1=.7171 Euro)