| NEW YORK, June 20
NEW YORK, June 20 Barclays Plc has
launched a long-anticipated sale process for its Index,
Portfolio and Risk Solutions (IPRS) business, which could yield
around $400 million for the UK bank, according to people
familiar with the matter.
A process for the unit kicked off in early June with
indications of interest from prospective bidders due later this
month, the people said this week, asking not to be named because
the matter is not public.
The business has attracted preliminary interest from several
parties, including MSCI Inc, Standard & Poor's
, FTSE, Markit Ltd, Bloomberg LP and Thomson
Reuters Corp, Interactive Data Corp the
Reuters first reported in November that Barclays began
exploring options for the index business following an approach
from MSCI, another index business.
A Barclays spokesman declined to comment. Representatives
for MSCI, Markit, Bloomberg and Thomson Reuters did not
immediately respond to requests for comment. Representatives
from FTSE, Standard & Poor's and Bloomberg declined to comment.
The index business Barclays intends to sell includes a
basket of over 98 major indexes, according to its website. The
U.S. Aggregate Bond Index, which Barclays bought as part of the
Lehman Brothers acquisition during the financial crisis, is
among the platform's best-known offerings.
The index business, known as a market leader, would attract
a wide range of buyers such as equity indexes, and investment
houses with distribution platforms, people familiar with the
matter have said.
But other index providers are also looking to ramp up their
offerings. FTSE, which is owned by the London Stock Exchange
Group Plc and is one of the dominant index providers in
Europe, has said it wants to increase its U.S. presence
In addition, the risk solutions side of the business unit
has software tools used by institutional investors to perform
analysis of their holdings. The two sides of the business are
seen as compatible and would not need to be split prior to a
potential acquisition, the people said.
(Reporting by Mike Stone in New York. Editing by Andre Grenon)