TPG takes part in 2 bids for SingTel's Australia satellite unit -report

SYDNEY, June 26 Tue Jun 25, 2013 8:00pm EDT

SYDNEY, June 26 (Reuters) - Private equity firm TPG Capital is involved in two separate bids for Singapore Telecommunications Ltd's Australian satellite unit, a business valued at more than A$2 billion ($1.9 billion), the Australian Financial Review reported.

TPG was involved in a bid with Blackstone Group as well as separate one with Malaysian satellite business MEASAT, the newspaper said in its online edition.

TPG declined to comment.

Trade buyer Eutelsat Communications SA and fellow private equity firm KKR also took part in the first round bids, AFR said.

SingTel, Southeast Asia's largest telecom operator, has put the satellite business of its Australian unit Optus on sale as it battles tepid growth in its key markets of Singapore and Australia.

Reuters sources have said that other bidders include Asia Satellite Telecommunications Holdings Ltd, Intelsat , Sky Perfect Jsat Holdings Inc, Britain's Inmarsat, Carlyle Group and SES.

Optus has circulated an information memorandum for the business to interested parties, and will provide more details next month, when selected bidders submit final bids, the newspaper said.

Optus Satellite operates five satellites, with another scheduled for launch in 2013. SingTel acquired the satellite arm when it bought Optus in 2001 for $14 billion.