EQT launches sale of utility services provider SAG: Reuters

(Reuters) — Buyout group EQT is launching the sale of German utility services provider SAG, which may fetch roughly 1 billion euros ($1.1 billion), three people familiar with the matter said.

The private equity investor has asked Deutsche Bank to explore options for the business, which posted earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortization (EBITDA) of about 90 million euros in the last 12 months and may be valued at 10 to 12 times that, they added.

EQT and Deutsche Bank declined to comment.

The auction, which is set to officially launch after the summer break, may attract companies from the construction sector, such as Strabag, Vinci, Bouygues and Caverion as well as other private equity groups.

SAG, formerly the energy-related activities of RWE Solutions, constructs and runs energy grids, employs roughly 8,000 staff and has annual sales of about 1.4 billion euros. It was founded in 1916 as Starkstrom Aktiengesellschaft to advance the electrification of Germany by building infrastructure.

EQT, which bought SAG in 2008, last year injected some fresh equity into the group after SAG ran into trouble with some offshore projects and as it saw its French business suffer from the weak economy.