October 9, 2019 / 11:46 AM / 7 days ago

Auto1, private equity firms to bid for Scout 24's cars unit - sources

FRANKFURT/BERLIN, Oct 9 (Reuters) - German classifieds group Scout24 has attracted interest for its autos unit AutoScout24 from used-car dealing platform Auto1 as well as from several private equity firms, people close to the matter said.

Scout24 yielded to pressure of activist investor Elliott and said in August that it would explore a sale or spin-off of Autoscout24. The unit is Germany’s No.2 used-car classifieds platform.

Buyout groups Permira, Apax, Carlyle and Hellman & Friedman are among those expected to hand in first-round bids of between 2 billion and 2.3 billion euros ($2.2 billion-$2.5 billion), including debt, for Autoscout24 by a Wednesday deadline, they said.

Publisher Axel Springer is also expected to put in a tentative offer, although it may not follow through to the final round as a deal would replicate same issue that led Elliott to press for the sale of Autoscout.

Scout24 and the potential suitors declined to comment or were not immediately available for comment. ($1 = 0.9106 euros) ($1 = 0.9111 euros) (Reporting by Arno Schuetze, Alexander Hübner and Douglas Busvine, Editing by Tassilo Hummel)

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