British private equity firm Charterhouse Capital Partners is currently in talks with a boutique investment bank over the possible exit of Scottish energy consultancy firm Wood Mackenzie, in a sale that is expected to fetch around £1bn.
According to the Daily Telegraph, a sale could fetch between ten and 14 times EBITDA for 2012, valuing the company at between £800m and £1.1bn. An exit of that size would generate a record-breaking profit for Charterhouse, which first invested in the business three years ago.
The firm hired Quayle Munro to conduct a strategic review of the company after receiving interest from US trade buyers.
Edinburgh-based Wood Mackenzie provides research and consulting services to the global energy industry including oil, coal, gas and power generation sectors in 93 countries.
In 2008, the company branched out into mining and metals via the acquisition of Brook Hunt, and achieved sales of £97m and profits of £38m that year. Last year the business is thought to have made around £70m.
Charterhouse agreed to buy the business from embattled private equity firm Candover in June 2009 for £553m including debt. Candover generated proceeds of £36.2m from the sale, which also attracted bids from Bain Capital, Warburg Pincus and Hellman & Friedman.
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