US Vantage Specialty Chemicals sale nears completion - sources

07 December 2011 22:52  [Source: ICIS news]

A For Sale SignNEW YORK (ICIS)--US-based oleochemicals producer Vantage Specialty Chemicals is close to being sold, with a private equity firm the likely buyer, several sources in the financial community said on Wednesday.

“The sale of Vantage is in the final stage with a buyer already selected and an announcement likely to come within the next month,” said one source.

The company, owned by US-based private equity firm HIG Capital, generates about $50m–60m (€38m–45m) in annual earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA), according to a number of sources.

The sale multiple is said to be relatively high at over eight times EBITDA, making for a final price of between $400m–480m or higher.

Vantage is being sold through a formal auction process that started several months ago, according to sources.

“It was a food fight among private equity firms – many were actively pursuing this asset,” said another source.

“Several private equity firms were after this asset – it was hotly contested,” another source said.

“This is indicative of the current [mergers and acquisitions] market where buyers are willing to pay good multiples for good businesses with scale,” he added.

The buyer is likely US-based private equity firm The Jordan Company (TJC), said one source.

TJC is no stranger to the chemical space. It owns US-based Haas Group International, a provider of chemical management services.

TJC would not comment on the information.

The Vantage assets comprise three US-based oleochemicals acquisitions made by HIG Capital – Chicago Oleochemicals (owned by UK-based Croda), Lambent Technologies and Lipo Chemicals.

HIG Capital, Vantage and TJC were contacted, but did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

($1 = €0.75)

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