April 16, 2012 / 9:26 PM / 6 years ago

Norit considering sale instead of IPO -sources

NEW YORK, April 16 (Reuters) - Norit N.V., a Dutch activated carbon maker that announced plans for a U.S. initial public offering last month, is also exploring selling itself, according to two sources familiar with the matter.

The company, which could fetch more than $750 million in a sale, has hired Goldman Sachs to advise on the process, the sources said. They said Norit could attract interest from private equity bidders.

Norit is majority owned by European private equity firm Doughty Hanson, which bought the company in 2007.

Dual-track processes, where both an IPO and an outright sale are explored, are often adopted by private equity firms trying to realize their investments in companies.

The company is a leading manufacturer of activated carbon, which is generally derived from charcoal and used in purification and filtration processes. It sold its Clean Process Technologies unit to Pentair Inc for 503 million euro last year.

Norit filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission in March to raise $200 million in an IPO, with Goldman Sachs and Deutsche Bank underwriting the offering.

Norit could not immediately be reached for comment. Goldman Sachs declined to comment.

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