RLPC: Apex Tools markets $1.475B credit

NEW YORK Thu Nov 8, 2012 4:04pm EST

NEW YORK Nov 8 (Reuters) - Goldman Sachs and Barclays are in market with a $1.475 billion credit facility that will back Bain Capital's acquisition of Apex Tool Group, sources told Thomson Reuters LPC.

The facility comprises a $175 million revolver, an $835 million term loan B and a $450 million bridge-to-bonds. Goldman Sachs is leading the bridge loan, while Barclays is leading the revolver and TLB.

Barclays declined to comment. Goldman Sachs did not return calls by press time. Apex referred calls to parents Danaher and Cooper. Danaher, Cooper and Bain did not return calls by press time.

The bridge loan launched November 7 via a conference call to bank lenders. The company is expected to tap the market with the revolver and term loan in the second week of December but timing may change since the syndication strategy is ongoing.

As previously reported, in October Danaher Corp and Cooper Industries [COOPI.UL} said they were planning to sell Apex, their hand and power tools joint venture, to Bain Capital joining a growing group of U.S. conglomerates divesting non-core assets.

The deal underscored the robust appetite of private equity firms, backed by cheap financing, for assets sold by companies or other buyout firms.

Danaher said it would receive about $650 million in net proceeds from the sale.

Barclays was lead adviser to Bain on the transaction, and provided committed financing along with Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley, RBC, Citigroup and Deutsche Bank. Goldman Sachs was Apex's exclusive financial adviser.

Danaher and Cooper each own 50 percent of Apex, which makes Crescent wrenches, Lufkin measuring tapes and hand tools for Sears Holdings Corp's Craftsman brand.

In its quest for Apex, Bain, the private equity firm co-founded by U.S. presidential candidate Mitt Romney, prevailed over other buyout firms like Platinum Equity LLC and American Securities LLC in an auction.