Feb 20 Anixter International Inc, which is backed by real estate mogul Sam Zell, has enlisted Goldman Sachs to find a buyer, Bloomberg News reported on Thursday, citing people with knowledge of the matter.
The company, which distributes communications and security products including electronic wires, has tried to sell itself "several times" over the past few years, the report cited one of the sources as saying.
Glenview, Illinois-based Anixter is weighing a sale again as its shares have climbed and on the back of stronger-than-expected revenue growth.
The company's shares, which have gained about 17 percent so far this year, rose as much as 6 percent to an all-time high of $109.19 on Thursday. Shares edged higher in extended trading.
Zell owns a 15 percent stake in the company, according to Thomson Reuters data. Zell and his son, Matthew, also serve on Anixter's board.
The report said Anixter would look for second-round bids next month and that French company Rexel SA is one of the bidders. The company had a market valuation of $3.42 billion as of Thursday's close.
Private equity firm Carlyle Group LP and U.K engineering firm Melrose Industries Plc are among the companies that have looked and passed on buying Anixter in recent weeks, according to the Bloomberg report. ()
Anixter's Chief Financial Officer Ted Dosch said it was company policy not to comment on market rumors. Goldman Sachs could not be immediately reached for comment outside regular U.S. business hours.