Germany’s Alpiq Anlagentechnik Sees PE Interest

Swiss energy firm Alpiq‘s sale of German power engineering business Alpiq Anlagentechnik Group is attracting interest from a number of private equity firms and trade buyers, Reuters wrote Thursday. First round bids are due in mid-November.

(Reuters) – Swiss energy firm Alpiq’s sale of German power engineering business Alpiq Anlagentechnik Group (AAT) is attracting interest from a number of private equity firms and trade buyers, banking sources said on Thursday.

Deutsche Bank is running the sales process, and an information memorandum was sent out last week on AAT, which comprises more than 20 companies with around 150 branch offices and over 4,500 staff.

A number of private equity firms and trade buyers are interested in AAT, and first round bids are due in November, the bankers added.

However, due to the size of AAT, it is expected that private equity buyers will make offers for parts of the company rather than look to buy it as a whole.

Leverage finance bankers are working on putting together debt packages to support the potential leveraged buyout but have indicated that it will be a lengthy process as the business is quite complex and has large undrawn facilities.

The company had earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) of 70 million euros ($98 million) last year.

Alpiq initiated the sale of AAT in July and is preparing for more disposals. It is part of a wider programme by Alpiq to reduce group debt by more than 1 billion Swiss francs ($1.2 billion) by the end of 2012, after disappointing 2011 first half results, when consolidated group profit was down 47.1 percent on 2010, according to a company statement.

In June Alpiq launched a package of measures to focus business operations, shed unprofitable businesses, consolidate financially and reorganise the company to improve efficiency and earnings, while streamlining the group’s structure. ($1 = 0.724 Euros) ($1 = 0.864 Swiss Francs) (Reporting by Claire Ruckin; Editing by Will Waterman)