June 2, 2013 / 3:06 PM / in 5 years

Springer Science close to announcing share float-source

FRANKFURT, June 2 (Reuters) - German publisher Springer Science+Business Media might announce plans for an initial public share offer (IPO) within the next two weeks, a source familiar with the matter said on Sunday.

No one was immediately available to comment at Springer Science, owned by Swedish private equity firm EQT and the Government of Singapore Investment Corporation (GIC).

Sources close to the process said in late April that five private equity groups were set to bid for Springer Science, with prospective buyers are unlikely to offer much more than a price tag of slightly over 3 billion euros ($3.9 billion).

German media group Bertelsmann has already said it is not considering buying Springer Science and no other trade bidders have emerged, the sources said at the time.

Springer Science’s owners are simultaneously working on a business sale and an initial public offer, which would likely take place in early July if the sellers conclude they could reap a higher price from a listing than an outright sale.

The company publishes 2,200 English-language journals and more than 8,000 new book titles every year across five main fields that also include science, business, and transport.

British private equity investors Candover and Cinven created Springer Science+Business Media in 2004 by merging Dutch group Kluwer Academic Publishers with German firm BertelsmannSpringer.

In December 2009 EQT together with GIC bought 82 percent and 18 percent of the company, respectively, from Candover and Cinven. ($1 = 0.7716 euros) (Reporting by Alexander Huebner; Editing by Greg Mahlich)

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