Lazard, Messier mandated to sell Maisons du Monde chain

PARIS Mon Feb 4, 2013 10:52am EST

PARIS Feb 4 (Reuters) - Investment banks Lazard and Messier Maris have been mandated to sell Maisons du Monde, a furniture store chain owned by private equity firms Apax and LBO France, sources familiar with the deal said on Wednesday.

Lazard and Messier Maris, the boutique bank controlled by former Vivendi Chief Executive Jean-Marie Messier, were chosen last week to run the process, expected to kick off later this month, the sources said.

The sources said a deal could give Maisons du Monde, which was valued at 435 million euros when LBO France and Apax acquired control in 2008, an enterprise value of at least 700 million euros ($958.72 million).

"They want to get the deal done before June," said one source. "It looks like the year-end numbers came out decently, so they want to get it off to the market before the tide turns."

LBO France and Apax, which each own 35 percent stakes in the furniture chain, each declined to comment. Lazard and Messier also declined to comment.