Australia appoints lead managers for Medibank Private IPO

SYDNEY, April 17 Wed Apr 16, 2014 10:56pm EDT

SYDNEY, April 17 (Reuters) - Australia on Thursday appointed Deutsche Bank, Goldman Sachs and Macquarie Capital as joint lead managers for the initial public offering of state-owned health insurer Medibank Private, tipped by local media to fetch about A$4 billion ($3.75 billion).

The sale of Medibank Private is part of an aggressive strategy by Australia's federal and state governments to sell off state-owned assets to pay down debt and fund investment in roads and other infrastructure projects.

"The precise timing and structure of the Medibank Private initial public offering is yet to be determined," Finance Minister Mathias Cormann said in a statement.

Medibank would rank among the biggest Australian floats of the year, alongside another health-related company, hospital operator Healthscope, which owners TPG Capital and The Carlyle Group are contemplating floating for an estimated A$5 billion.

($1 = 1.0674 Australian Dollars) (Reporting by Lincoln Feast; Editing by Christopher Cushing)