* Co-CEOs had mulled 400 mln euro-plus sale last year
* Rivals include eBay's PayPal, Western Union
* Morgan Stanley, Jefferies to work on listing -sources
(Adds reference to SmartStream sale)
By Quentin Webb and Chris Vellacott
LONDON, Oct 7 Investcorp INVB.BH, the
Bahrain-based investment bank, plans to float Moneybookers, the
fast-growing European online payment firm it tried to sell last
year, four people familiar with the matter said on Thursday.
Investcorp has hired Morgan Stanley and Jefferies to help
prepare for a stockmarket listing, the people said. Bank of
America Merrill Lynch is also likely to have a role, two of the
News of the potential flotation emerged as another
Internet-focused company, Betfair, opened the books on a planned
flotation that would value the online betting exchange at up to
1.5 billion pounds ($2.4 billion). [ID:nLDE696072]
In Dubai, meanwhile, the owners of financial software firm
SmartStream, whose trade-processing technology is used by
three-quarters of the world's top banks, are separately seeking
buyers for that company, people familiar with the matter said.
London-based Moneybookers hired JPMorgan to explore a
potential sale last year but later shelved the auction.
Its co-chief executives told Reuters then that it had been
approached by major Internet companies, U.S. payment processors
and private equity firms about a potential deal and it could
fetch more than 400 million euros ($560 million).
Moneybookers competes with online auctioneer eBay's (EBAY.O)
Paypal service, and with money transfer companies including
Western Union Co (WU.N) for "peer-to-peer" business such as
helping expatriates send money home. It also handles payments
for gambling websites.
Investcorp hopes the London listing, of perhaps a third of
the company, could place a value of more than 500 million euros
on the whole, one of the people said.
But this person said that target appeared ambitious,
particularly if Moneybookers were to command a similar valuation
multiple to the gaming websites it serves.
Investcorp, Moneybookers and Morgan Stanley declined to
comment. A Jefferies spokeswoman did not immediately respond to
a request for comment.
Moneybookers recorded a near-40 percent rise in turnover in
2009 to 48.06 million euros, an annual report filed with
Britain's Companies House shows.
Net profit rose 18.6 percent to 16.85 million euros.
Moneybookers said it enjoyed some of the highest margins in the
Investcorp has owned a majority stake in Moneybookers since
(Editing by Will Waterman)