February 8, 2013 / 10:30 AM / in 5 years

Indonesia's Bakrie Group in talks to sell its media unit-sources

JAKARTA, Feb 8 (Reuters) - Indonesia’s politically influential Bakrie family is in talks to sell its majority interest in media unit PT Visi Media Asia to help finance a plan to buy back coal assets from London-listed Bumi Plc, three sources with direct knowledge of the deal said on Friday.

The bidding process has been going on for the past two months with local bidders, including MNC Group, CT Corp and PT Elang Mahkota Teknologi, the sources said.

Visi Media CEO Erick Tohir told Reuters he was unaware of the plan. Representatives of the Bakrie family and the MNC Group were not immediately available for comment.

MNC Group, owned by tycoon Hary Tanoesoedibjo and the country’s biggest media company, appeared to be the leading bidder for the deal, the sources said, adding the winner could be announced over the next few days.

Bakrie is looking for a high valuation for its media unit at $1.2 billion to $2 billion, though Visi Media’s current market capitalisation is only at $845 million, sources said.

The sources declined to be named because details had not yet been made public. Visi has two national TV stations and a news website. The Bakries have a majority stake.

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