EQT launches sale of part of Bilfinger unit weeks after purchase, say sources: Reuters

Swedish private equity group EQT has put up for sale part of the real estate services business it bought from Germany’s Bilfinger for 1.2 billion euros ($1.3 bln) less than two months ago, two sources close to the matter said.

EQT has asked Deutsche Bank to find a buyer for the buildings construction part of the business, the sources said. It has approached several construction groups and a deal may be finalised as early as August, they said.

Peers include Strabag, Porr and Vinci .

EQT said in June when it bought the whole asset that it would invest in the business and aimed to make it Europe’s top real estate services firm. The part now up for sale specialises in constructing retail and commercial buildings.

German weekly Der Spiegel reported earlier on Friday that EQT planned to divest part of the asset. EQT and Deutsche Bank declined to comment.

Loss-making Bilfinger has issued half a dozen profit warnings and seen four chief executives depart in the past two years as it struggled to reinvent itself, increasing the influence of 26 percent owner and activist shareholder Cevian.

Bilfinger said in June that it would plough most of the proceeds from the sale of its real estate services unit back into its other businesses.