Tencent-led investor group to take China's Bitauto private for $1.1 billion

(Reuters) - Chinese car comparison website Bitauto Holdings Ltd BITA.N on Friday agreed to be taken private by an investor group backed by gaming and social media firm Tencent Holdings Ltd 0700.HK for $1.1 billion in cash.

As per the deal, Bitauto shareholders will receive $16 per share, representing a premium of nearly 12% to its closing price on Thursday.

The company’s U.S.-listed shares were up nearly 9% at $15.60 in premarket trading on Friday.

The buyout offer comes at a time when the world’s second-largest economy is gradually recovering from government imposed lockdowns to control the spread of the novel coronavirus.

The deal is expected close in the second half of 2020.

BofA Securities served as financial adviser to the investor group, which also includes private equity firm Hammer Capital, while Latham & Watkins LLP and Kirkland and Ellis served as U.S. legal counsel and Hong Kong legal counsel, respectively.

Reporting by Akanksha Rana in Bengaluru; Editing by Aditya Soni