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Coates Considers IPO, Sources Say

Private equity firm Carlyle Group and Australia’s Seven Group Holdings are considering attempting to raise as much as a reported $800 million through an initial public offering of Coates Hire, Australia’s largest equipment rental company, according to online news reports. However, Coates Hire finance director James Welch said in a statement: “Contrary to online media reports, Coates Hire does not currently have an intention to conduct an initial public offering.”

Carlyle and Seven, which each own about 46 percent of Coates, have, according to reports, hired Bank of America-Merrill Lynch, Deutsche Bank, JP Morgan and Macquarie Group to look at fundraising options, including an IPO. At the same time the groups have reportedly reached a deal to refinance $1.85 billion of debt, and have extended the facility for two years through July 2015. Reports said that more than two-thirds of the banks involved in the existing senior debt syndicate, including Westpac, ANZ, Sumitomo Mitsui Financial Group and Mizuho Financial Group, have agreed to extend the debt.

Goldman Sachs analysts said this week that refinancing the debt would be a key step towards a possible Coates IPO.

Coates’ Welch referred to the refinancing and would only say the company is reviewing various means of funding the Coates business, and other sources have said Coates has not yet decided on a possible IPO.

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