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3i and Star Capital to float SR Technics

The London-based private equity firms have appointed Rothschild and Wyvern Partners to advise on a flotation of Swiss aircraft maintenance company SR Technics.

UK private equity firms 3i and Star Capital are preparing portfolio company SR Technics for a flotation later this year.

London-based 3i and Star Capital have appointed Rothschild and Wyvern Partners as advisers on a possible initial public offering of SR Technics on the Swiss stock exchange.

3i confirmed that Rothschild and Wyvern Partners had been appointed but declined to comment further. According to a report in The Business, SR Technics is expected to float for around $1 billion (€783 million).

Zurich-based SR Technics, an aeroplance maintenance company, was acquired by 3i and Star Capital in a €425 million buyout in December 2002 after going into bankruptcy. The private equity firms backed the €140 million purchase in June 2004 of FLS Aerospace, a Danish-owned aircraft maintenance and engineering provider with bases in the UK and Ireland.

In September of last year, SR Technics procured a €266 million refinancing facility from GE Commercial Aviation Services, the aviation financing unit of GE, to pay down senior and mezzanine debt from the 2002 acquisition and bolt-on purchase of FLS Aerospace. It was also used to support further expansion of the company’s fleet technical management and component business.

SR Technics provides component, engine and technical services for the aviation industry. The company, whose clients include easyJet, Gulf Air and Vietnam Airlines, employs a workforce of over 5,000 and has reported revenues of approximately CHF1.2 billion (€770 million; $983 million) a year.