* Doughty bought Spain's no. 2 bus firm in 2006
* Expansion says business could be worth 900 million euros
(Updates with confirmation from Doughty Hanson)
By Andres Gonzalez and Quentin Webb
MADRID/LONDON, March 24 British private equity
group Doughty Hanson [DOUHA.UL] signalled it was considering a
sale or flotation of its Spanish bus firm Avanza Group and had
hired JP Morgan (JPM.N) as an adviser.
"Doughty Hanson has chosen JPMorgan to lead a strategic
review of the options available to Avanza," a spokesman for the
buyout firm said.
The group is looking at a sale, a flotation or a refinancing
of Avanza, which it bought in 2006, two people familiar with the
matter said earlier on Thursday.
Avanza is Spain's second-largest bus company after Alsa,
owned by Britain's National Express (NEX.L).
Newspaper Expansion, which earlier reported JPMorgan's
hiring, said Avanza could be worth about 900 million euros ($1.3
In a sale, potential bidders could include strategic rivals
such as Deutsche Bahn [DBN.UL] unit Arriva, Stagecoach (SGC.L)
and National Express, as well as private equity firms such as
CVC [CVC.UL], Carlyle [CYL.UL], Bridgepoint, Apax, Advent
International, Permira [PERM.UL] and Blackstone (BX.N),
Avanza and JPMorgan declined to comment.
(Reporting by Andres Gonzalez in Madrid and Quentin Webb in
London; Writing by Elizabeth O'Leary; Editing by Will Waterman)