Bain Capital and Permira Advisers are reportedly among those selected to submit final round bids by MBK Partners for Taiwanese cable and broadband operator China Network Systems (CNS).
MBK declined to comment. Bain Capital, Permira and CNS could not be reached by press time.
Global firm Macquarie Group has also been invited to make a final bid on the deal, according to a report today on Bloomberg. Potential buyers must submit binding offers by late September, the report stated citing unnamed sources.
In July, it was reported in The Wall Street Journal that MBK was seeking up to $2.5 billion on the sale, which is being advised by Morgan Stanley. The company is one of Taiwan’s largest cable television and broadband providers with a market share of more than one million subscribers in the Greater Taipei, Kaohsiung City and Tainan regions, according to its website.
Seoul-headquartered MBK bought a 60 percent stake in China Network in 2007 for $930 million, defeating TPG’s Newbridge in the final bidding round. The investment was made from the firm’s first fund, MBK Partners I.
The firm, which also has offices in Tokyo, Hong Kong and Shanghai, was established in 2005 and currently manages more than $3.7 billion in capital. It focuses on buyouts in Korea, Japan and the greater China region and specialises in the telecommunications and media, financial services, heavy industrials, consumer, pharmaceuticals and business services sectors.
Boston-based Bain Capital is an active investor in Asia and focuses on deals in China, Japan and India. In July, the firm agreed to buy 100 percent stake of Chinese auto parts supplier Asimco Technologies for nearly $150 million. This followed a $125 million investment in Mumbai-listed Himadri Chemicals in January and a $61 million investment in Indian clothing manufacturer Lilliput Kidswear in April.
Permira has made two investments in Asia thus far. In 2007, it acquired a 20 percent stake in Macau-based casino operator Galaxy Entertainment for €593 million. The transaction was followed by a €1.95 billion investment in Japanese agrochemical company Arysta LifeScience in 2008, according to the company’s website.