Thyssenkrupp shortlists three private equity consortia in elevator sale: sources

FILE PHOTO: The logo of Thyssenkrupp is seen near elevators at its headquarters in Essen, Germany, November 21, 2019. REUTERS/Leon Kuegeler/File Photo

FRANKFURT/DUESSELDORF, Germany (Reuters) - Thyssenkrupp TKAG.DE has shortlisted three private equity consortia in the auction of its prized 15 billion euro ($16.6 billion) elevator business, people close to the matter said, and peer Kone KNEBV.HE could still submit a bid later this month.

A consortium of buyout groups Advent and Cinven [CINV.UL] and the Abu Dhabi Investment Authority, which are working with Germany’s RAG Stiftung, remains in the running, the people said.

Also still in the race is a bidding team consisting of Blackstone BX.N, Carlyle CG.O and the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board.

The third group is led by Canada's Brookfield BMAa.TO, they said.

Kone, working with private equity firm CVC [CVC.UL], has been given until Jan. 27 to submit an offer, the sources said, while private equity bidders had to hand in bids by Jan. 13.

“Management is apparently unable to make a decision even though there are decent offers on the table and pressure on (CEO Martina) Merz grows by the day,” a person close to the process said.

Thyssenkrupp and the bidders declined to comment or were not immediately available for comment.

Under pressure after numerous profit warnings, Thyssenkrupp needs to rake in cash by selling all or part of its elevator business, the world’s fourth-largest industry player and by far the group’s most profitable asset.

The group has launched a dual-track process for the division, which could result in a sale or a listing, but chances for the latter are seen dwindling as proceeds from a partial flotation might not be sufficient.

Reporting by Arno Schuetze, Christoph Steitz, Matthias Inverardi and Tom Käckenhoff; Editing by Michelle Martin and David Evans