UPDATE 1-Astorg, Montagu to buy French diagnostics firm Sebia from Cinven

Mon Jun 2, 2014 9:14am EDT

(Adds detail on deal)

LONDON, June 2 (Reuters) - European private equity firms Montagu and Astorg said on Monday they would buy French medical diagnostics company Sebia from private equity firm Cinven after entering into exclusive negotiations.

The deal marks the second time Montagu has invested in Sebia, after it sold the company to Cinven in 2010. Cinven said the latest sale would generate a return of 2.4 times its original investment.

Cinven bought Sebia from Montagu for around 800 million euros in 2010. Terms of the latest deal were not disclosed, but Les Echos newspaper said earlier on Monday it was in excess of 1 billion euros ($1.4 billion), adding that the firms had beaten off competition from Swedish fund Nordic Capital to clinch the deal.

Sebia, which sells its products to over 110 countries worldwide, has increased its presence in the United States since Cinven took over, with the region now accounting for 21 percent of total revenue. It has also launched a diabetes test.

Cinven has invested 2.9 billion euros in 11 healthcare companies to date, generating 2.7 times its investment on its exited transactions. ($1 = 0.7328 Euros) (Reporting by Freya Berry and Claire Ruckin at IFR; editing by Clare Hutchison and David Evans)