French private equity firm PAI Partners looks set to sell local engineering group SPIE after granting exclusivity to a consortium of private equity investors.
The investor group, led by US firm Clayton, Dubilier & Rice, bidding alongside French firm AXA Private Equity and Canadian investor Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec, are set to acquire the company for €2.1bn.
SPIE specialises in electrical and mechanical engineering and HVAC services, energy and communication systems, consulting with local authorities and companies design and build more efficient energy systems.
With 28,600 employees working from nearly 400 locations in 31 countries, in 2010 SPIE generated €192.3m operating profit on €3.75bn turnover.
PAI said that CD&R and AXA’s relationship with the SPIE management team was a deciding factor in the bidding.
AXA managing director Dominique Gaillard said, “We have been very impressed by SPIE management’s track-record. We have known them for several years – we have witnessed the company’s growth and innovation path as well as its high reactivity especially during the recent downturn.”
Earlier this month, AXA backed the owner buy-out (OBO of online ticketing site Ticket Surf International, taking a 25 per cent stake in the company.
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