Ancestry.com bids fall short of expectations: sources

NEW YORK Wed Aug 22, 2012 9:24pm EDT

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NEW YORK (Reuters) - Bids submitted earlier this month by private equity firms for Ancestry.com, the family-history research website, have fallen short of the company's expectations, according to two people familiar with the matter.

Buyout firms, including Permira Advisers LLP and TPG Capital LP, are now considering whether they should increase their offers, the people said.

Other private equity houses, including Providence Equity Partners, are no longer vying for the company, they added.

Bloomberg News, which reported on the status of the process earlier on Wednesday, cited one source as saying that Ancestry.com had rejected a bid of $35 per share.

The stock closed at $30.24 on Wednesday, giving the company a total market value of $1.3 billion.

An Ancestry.com spokeswoman did not immediately return a call for comment after normal business hours.

Representatives of TPG and Providence declined to comment while a Permira official did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Ancestry.com suffered a blow in May when U.S. network NBC decided not to renew the company's TV show for a fourth season. The company sponsored the American version of the popular British series "Who Do You Think You Are?" The show, built around tracing celebrities' family history through Ancestry.com's databases, was a major driver of new subscriber additions for the company's website.

Private equity firm Spectrum Equity Investors LP acquired a majority stake in the parent company that runs Ancestry.com and other sites for $300 million in 2007. The investor took Ancestry.com public two years later in a $100 million offering.

(Reporting by Greg Roumeliotis and Soyoung Kim, additional reporting by David Henry; Editing by Richard Pullin)

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