IK Investment to launch sale of Minimax - sources

Sun Dec 15, 2013 9:58am EST

* Deutsche Bank likely to be mandated for sale - sources

* Sale process to start in Q1 next year - sources

* Sale could value Minimax at 1 bln euros - sources

FRANKFURT, Dec 15 (Reuters) - Private equity group IK Investment Partners has revived plans to sell Germany-based fire extinguisher maker Minimax, three people familiar with the process told Reuters.

The private equity house is likely to mandate Deutsche Bank to find a buyer for the company, two of them said.

Minimax, which generates more than 1 billion euros ($1.37 billion) in sales, is one of the world's largest fire equipment suppliers. It generates the vast majority of sales from industrial fire protection systems and is expected to be valued at about 1 billion euros in a potential sale, they said.

The buyout firm last year considered a sale of Minimax but then opted for a dividend recapitalisation.

The sale process would start in the first quarter of next year, the sources said.

IK bought Minimax in 2006 from Investcorp for an undisclosed amount, financing the deal with 530 million euros in bank lending, according to data from Thomson Reuters LPC.

At that point the company had revenues of under 500 million euros a year, but it has since grown considerably, taking over U.S. rival Viking Group in 2009.

IK Investments and Deutsche Bank were not immediately available for comment, outside office hours.

German newspaper Frankfurter Allgemeine Sonntagszeitung reported earlier on Sunday that banks were pitching for a role in a potential sale. ($1 = 0.7283 euros) (Reporting by Arno Schuetze; Writing by Harro ten Wolde; Editing by Alison Williams)

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