Sale Underway for UK Forensics Firm LGC

LONDON (Reuters) – Prospective buyers are preparing bids for LGC, the British specialist in forensics and other scientific testing, whose owners hope to raise about 200 million pounds ($328 million), people familiar with the matter said. Bidders, who include private equity firms, have just received “information memorandums” detailing the business and its prospects, the people said.

The sale, run by KPMG, is likely to take months.

LGC, which says it is Britain’s largest private forensic science company, belongs to LGV Capital, the private equity unit of insurer Legal & General Group Plc (LGEN.L).

LGC has grown rapidly since it was privatised in 1996. In the last financial year it made turnover of 120 million pounds, up 18 percent on the previous year.

LGC’s forensics division works with the police and other authorities, offering toxicology, drug, and paternity testing, and sending scientists to help investigators at crime scenes.

Its three other divisions offer services such as genetic and mass-spectrometry testing and providing reference materials for laboratory testing.

LGC, LGV Capital and KPMG declined to comment. ($1=0.6105 pounds) (Reporting by Quentin Webb; Editing by Mike Nesbit)