May 19, 2020 / 6:12 PM / 14 days ago

Aareal Bank says selling minority stake in software unit Aareon

FRANKFURT (Reuters) - German real estate lender Aareal Bank (ARLG.DE) said it was inviting bids from financial investors for a significant minority stake in its Aareon unit to help finance the software business’s future growth.

A partner would be picked based on the price but also on “support for Aareon’s growth strategy, particularly in terms of stepping up M&A activities,” the lender said in a statement on Tuesday.

It added it would be talking to a select group of long-term financial investors with sector expertise.

Aareal added it intends to remain Aareon’s majority shareholder but did not specify the size of the stake for sale.

Aareal last year evaluated strategic options for Aareon following pressure from activist investor Teleios, but in November decided against a majority sale.

The bank said on Tuesday it was being advised in the transaction by consultancy firm Arma Partners.

Reporting by Ludwig Burger; Editing by Chris Reese and Sonya Hepinstall

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