Lehman estate eyes disposal of Archstone - FT

LONDON Tue Aug 9, 2011 8:12pm EDT

LONDON Aug 10 (Reuters) - Lehman Brothers LEHMQ.PK is pushing ahead with plans to sell or list Archstone, the apartment company that it took private for $22 billion at the height of the property boom, the Financial Times said on Wednesday.

The current market ructions are complicating discussions about how to proceed with Bank of America (BAC.N) and Barclays (BARC.L), who also own sizeable stakes in the company, the FT said. [ID:nN3196221]

The newspaper cited people familiar with the matter as saying the banks were working on documents for an initial offering, which could be filed by the end of the month.

JPMorgan Chase (JPM.N) has been retained to assist with a possible float.

The group has also started discussions about a potential sale of Archstone, which could be valued at as much as $20 billion including debt, or just a stake, with a select group of potential buyers, the newspaper said.

Possible buyers include publicly listed property companies EQR (EQR.N) and AvalonBay (AVB.N), as well as Blackstone (BX.N) and Brookfield Asset Management (BAMa.TO), people familiar with the matter told the FT.

Lehman led the $22 billion leveraged buy-out of Archstone in 2007, as part of the investment bank's ill-fated foray into commercial property.

Lehman, Barclays and Bank of America were unavailable for immediate comment. (Reporting by Stephen Mangan; Editing by Gary Hill)

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