Advertisement

HSH Nordbank privatisation attracts private equity offers -sources

HSH Nordbank privatisation attracts private equity offers -sources
From Reuters - October 29, 2017

FRANKFURT (Reuters) - The owners of Germanys HSH Nordbank [HSH.UL] received binding offers from private equity groups Apollo (APO.N), Cerberus [CBS.UL] and J.C. Flowers by a deadline on Friday as part of its EU-enforced privatization, people close to the matter said.

The owners of HSH Nordbank, which required a state rescue after being hit by the slump in the shipping industry, confirmed in a statement on Sunday that they have received binding offers for the bank but did not elaborate further.

According to the people close to the matter, Apollo, Cerberus and J.C. Flowers have put in binding final offers for Nordbank, which the German states of Schleswig-Holstein and Hamburg must privatize by the end of February under European state-aid rules.

The two states jointly hold 89 percent of HSH, while local savings banks hold 6 percent and J.C. Flowers owns 5 percent.

HSHs owners aim to sell the bank as a whole, but are open to divest it in pieces as buyers have signaled they would be interested in parts but not all of the bank.

If no buyer emerges for some of the assets, Hamburg and Schleswig-Holstein could wind the remainder down, possibly by using a vehicle that was set up to transfer HSHs toxic assets.

However, the two states are not allowed to take on any losses in order to avoid new state aid proceedings. The EU allows the current state owners to retain a stake of not more than 25 percent for up to four years.

Advertisement

Continue reading at Reuters »