City investors in "advanced discussions" in £1.2bn deal for BCA
According to various publications, the £1.2bn takeover would see the vehicle auction giant being bought by a listed vehicle called Haversham Holdings, which has backing from a funding group comprising including Aviva Investors, Artemis, Invesco and Schroders.
Haversham Holdings was set up last year to fund “acquisitions of substantial companies and businesses in the UK and European automotive, support services, leasing, engineering or manufacturing sectors", and is run by Avril Palmer-Baunuck, who was formerly chief executive of Autologic and executive chairman of Stobart Group.
BCA is owned by Clayton Dubilier & Rice, the US private equity company. If the deal proceeds, it will be the second time in six months that CD&R has looked at offloading BCA, following last autumn when it stopped a flotation of BCA, citing volatile global equity markets.
At the time, it said: "The board and shareholders were very encouraged by the broad engagement and interest in BCA shown by investors and remain excited about supporting the next phase of the group's growth.
"BCA has an excellent track record as Europe's leading used vehicle marketplace with strong revenues and earnings growth on the back of momentum across its physical and digital platforms."
No official statement has been released but according to the Financial Times, Haversham confirmed yesterday (16 March) that it was in “advanced discussions which might lead to a transaction”.