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William Morris nears deal to acquire IMG from Forstmann Little

18 Dec 2013

hollywood_lrgTalent agency William Morris Endeavor Entertainment is reportedly nearing a deal to buy peer IMG Worldwide from private equity firm Forstmann Little for $2.3bn.

William Morris, which is backed by Silver Lake, is currently finalising negotiations and could announce the sale as soon as today, said Reuters, citing a person familiar with the matter. It was previously reported that the company could sell for more than $2bn.

Private equity firm CVC Capital Partners and a consortium that included private equity firm Carlyle and talent agency ICM were also finalists in the auction, people familiar with the matter told Reuters.

KKR has also shown interest in IMG, but dropped out of the bidding process last month.

Forstmann Little hired Morgan Stanley and Evercore Partners in May to advise on the potential sale.

The firm reportedly rejected a $2bn buyout bid at that time from fellow private equity firm Colony Capital, while CVC Capital Partners was also reportedly mulling an offer.

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