IK launches sale of sports pitch maker Sport Group, say sources-Reuters

(Reuters) – Buyout group IK Investment Partners has launched the sale of its German asset Sport Group, hoping to fetch a price of more than 300 million euros ($374 million), three people familiar with the deal said.

IK has mandated mid-market focused investment bank Lincoln to organize the sale of the firm, which installs tracks and artificial turf pitches, they said.

Tentative bids, which may value the business at six to eight times core earnings, are due in several weeks, they added.
IK bought Sport Group in 2006 from funds advised by ECM.

In 2011, an attempt to sell the firm failed as buyout firms such as EQT, Nordic Capital and PAI Partners expressed concern that Sport Group’s earnings could drop in a wave of falling public spending in the economic crisis.

IK and Lincoln declined to comment.