A consortium led by Carlyle Group and Pacific Equity Partners made a non-conditional offer to acquire fund administration firm Link Group.
A regulatory filing Monday with the Australian Stock Exchange by Link Administration Holdings said the proposed deal offers $5.20 a share to Link shareholders, giving a deal value of about A$2.8 billion ($2 billion). It assumes no further dividends, distributions or reductions in capital would be paid from the date of the proposal.
Any acquisition is subject to due diligence, negotiation and execution of documentation, securing debt financing, final investment committee approval from the consortium and certain regulatory and other approvals.
Financial services firm Perpetual holds a 9.65% stake in Link Group. The firm stated its intention to support any acquisition by the consortium in a letter, the filing said.
A letter addressed to Link's independent chairman and non-executive director, signed by Carlyle and PEP representatives and available through Link's investor relations website, said the consortium has also recognized "shareholders' desire to retain exposure to PEXA and the business." Link acquired a 44.2% stake in Property Exchange Australia last year.
The letter said the consortium is "prepared to work with the company to offer a scrip alternative to allow Link shareholders to retain their pro rata exposure to PEXA and the opportunity to rollover existing shares alongside the consortium subject to a cap to be agreed."
Equity funding for the deal is expected to come from Carlyle Asia Partners V and Pacific Equity Partners' Fund VI, with potential further co-investment participation from other funds wholly controlled by the two managers, the letter added.
Spokesmen at Carlyle and PEP could not immediately be reached for comment.