| NEW YORK
NEW YORK Financial information services company Markit Group is moving ahead with an initial public offering and has hired Goldman Sachs (GS.N) as the lead coordinator of the deal, four people familiar with the process said on Tuesday.
The London-based company, which competes with Bloomberg and Thomson Reuters Corp (TRI.TO), is seeking to raise more than $1 billion in a U.S. listing and is in the process of interviewing banks to fill out its underwriting syndicate, the sources said.
A registration statement for the deal could be filed with U.S. regulators during the fourth quarter of this year, although timing is still in flux and could change depending on market conditions, one of the sources said.
All the sources asked not to be named because the plans are not public. Goldman Sachs declined to comment.
A Markit spokesperson said in a statement that the company has made no decision to pursue a public listing.
Markit's ownership structure and customer base could make selecting underwriters for the IPO tricky, the sources said.
Private equity firm General Atlantic bought a 7.5 percent stake in Markit for $250 million in January 2010. The majority of Markit is controlled by banks including Goldman, JPMorgan Chase (JPM.N) and Bank of America (BAC.N). Markit's customers also include these banks, which use the firm's financial data and trade processing services primarily for the credit market.
Markit will have to walk a fine line when choosing banks to avoid upsetting its owners and customers, the sources said.
Founded by Canadian Lance Uggla in 2001, Markit received a $500 million investment from Singapore state investor Temasek Holdings Pte Ltd earlier this year. Temasek's investment valued the company at around $5 billion.
In May, Thomson Reuters and Markit teamed up with several investment banks to build a new messaging program to rival Bloomberg's service, according to Financial News.
(Reporting by Jessica Toonkel and Olivia Oran in New York, Editing by Soyoung Kim and Steve Orlofsky)