THL, Quadrangle file $500m IPO for call centre operator

The private equity firms reportedly may make up to a 3x multiple on West Corp, which they took private in 2006 for $3.3bn.

The call centre operator that Thomas H Lee and Quandrangle Group took private three years ago has registered to raise up to $500 million in an initial public offering.

No timeline was given for the IPO, which counts Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley as senior joint book-runners, with Bank of America Merrill Lynch and Citi as subsidiaries.

Omaha, Nebraska-headquartered West Corp employs 43,000 people in North America, Europe and Asia. Its various divisions include Intrado, which provides the US' emergency 911 call infrastructure, and Intercall, the world's largest conferencing service provider.

Last year its revenue grew more than 7 percent to $2.2 billion.

THL and Quadrangle took the company private for $3.3 billion in October 2006. Since then, the company has spent about $800 million on add-on acquisitions, according to its IPO filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Should the company raise the full $500 million and list, the private equity firms may make 2.5 to 3 times their original investment, an unnamed investment source told Reuters.

THL ranks 31st on the PEI 300, Private Equity International's ranking of the world's largest private equity firms based on capital raised in the past five years. The Boston-based firm raised $10.2 billion between 1 January 2004 and 15 April 2009. New York-headquartered Quadrangle ranks 158th with $1.8 billion raised during the same period.