KKR, Carlyle and Providence Equity Partners are reported to have expressed an interest in buying EQT and GIC-backed Springer Science and Business Media, the world’s second-largest publisher of scientific research journals.
German media giant Bertelsmann, which was also previously reported to be considering a bid for the business, could partner with a buyout firm such as KKR or a sovereign wealth fund, Bloomberg reported, citing unnamed people familiar with the transaction.
Carlyle could team up with another private equity firm like Providence, which is also understood to be looking at company, the report said.
A potential deal could be worth between €3bn and €4bn, the report added.
Goldman Sachs and JPMorgan have been mandated to prepare for an initial public offering and potential sale, the report said, adding that Zurich-based Lilja & Co has also been hired as IPO adviser.
Previous reports said the company made about £250m of profit last year.
EQT Partners and GIC Special Investments bought Springer Science for about €2.3bn in December 2009 from buyout firms Candover and Cinven, following months of bidding by rival parties.
EQT took an 82 per cent stake in the business, while GIC bought the remaining interest.
Springer was formed through the merger of Kluwer Academic Publishers and BertelsmannSpringer.
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