Report: IDC Approaches Possible Buyers

(Reuters) Financial market data provider Interactive Data Corp (IDC.N) has approached potential bidders to see if they would be interested in buying the company, the Financial Times newspaper reported on Friday.

IDC’s approaches to possible buyers are at an early stage, the newspaper said, citing unnamed people familiar with the situation.

British publishing group Pearson (PSON.L), IDC’s majority shareholder with a 62 percent stake, is prepared to look at a number of options, including a sale, the FT added.

Pearson, which also owns the Financial Times newspaper, could not immediately be reached for comment. No one at IDC’s European office was available.

The FT said both companies declined to comment on its report of a possible sale.

New York-listed IDC, which provides prices for fixed income and illiquid securities for portfolio managers, is worth $2.4 billion by market capitalisation. Pearson’s stake is valued at about $1.5 billion.

Private equity firms have shown interest in IDC in recent years because it has high profit margins and stable cash flows, although the size of the deal would deter all but the largest bidders, the report said, citing people familiar with the matter.

Attempts to buy IDC by financial news and data providers such as privately owned Bloomberg, McGraw-Hill (MHP.N) and Thomson Reuters (TRI.TO)(TRI.N) could face competition hurdles, the FT said, citing industry executives. (Reporting by Peter Griffiths; Editing by Steve Orlofsky)