SYDNEY Goldman Sachs Group (GS.N) has been appointed financial advisor to the former head of sandalwood plantation group Quintis Ltd (QIN.AX) as he considers a joint bid for the A$450 million ($340.34 million) company, his spokesman said on Tuesday.
Frank Wilson, who owns around 13 percent of Quintis, resigned as the company's managing director on March 28 to consider making a takeover offer alongside an unidentified international group.
"Goldman Sachs, as financial advisor, will be managing a process to assess the approaches to Mr Wilson," a spokesman for Wilson said on Tuesday. "The process is in its early stages and it will take some time to work through the details before any potential offer can be presented to the Quintis board."
Quintis, formerly known as TFS Corp, owns Indian sandalwood plantations. Oil from the trees is sold to India and China for fragrances, cosmetics and medicinal uses.
U.S. private equity firm KKR & Co LP (KKR.N) is one of several parties that has approached Wilson about a bid for Quintis, Reuters has reported previously.
A spokesman for KKR declined to comment on Tuesday.
KKR has a controlling stake in Santanol Group, which owns and operates Indian sandalwood plantations in the same part of Western Australia as Quintis.
Quintis said last month it had retained legal and financial advisers to assess any proposal lodged by Wilson or other parties in the future.
Wilson's resignation came a week after the publication of a highly negative report by short-seller Glaucus Research Group that knocked shares in Quintis down 24 percent.
A Quintis spokesman on Tuesday declined to comment and a Goldman Sachs spokeswoman declined to comment.
(Reporting by Jamie Freed; Editing by Christopher Cushing)