LONDON, May 4 (Reuters) - Bankers are working on debt packages of around US$1bn to back a potential sale of Swiss-based smart meter group Landis+Gyr, banking sources said on Thursday.
Japan’s Toshiba Corp said in April it was considering a stock market listing and other options for Landis+Gyr. It hired UBS earlier this year on the potential divestment of the group, potentially valued at over US$2bn.
The sale is set to attract a number of buyers and bids are due in the first round of an auction process on May 21, the sources said.
Potential bidders include Advent, AEA, BC Partners, Blackstone, CVC, Onex and Triton, the sources said. Buyout groups Carlyle, Cinven, Bain, CD&R and even former owner KKR could also bid, Reuters reported previously.
The sellers and bidders either declined to comment or were not immediately available to comment.
Some US$1bn of debt equates to around 5-6 times Landis+Gyr’s approximate US$200m Ebitda, the sources said.
The financing is expected to be denominated in dollars and euros and could either be in the form of leveraged loans or high yield bonds, the sources said.
Smart meter makers have seen a wave of M&A activity. CVC is selling German metering and energy management group Ista, which could be worth up to €4bn, while German metering group Techem could be put up for sale later in the year.
Toshiba bought Landis+Gyr in 2011 for US$2.3bn jointly with state-backed Innovation Network Corporation of Japan, which holds the remaining 40% in the company.
Landis+Gyr, in which Toshiba owns a 60% stake, employs more than 5,700 staff and is active in over 30 countries. (Editing by Christopher Mangham)