Ratos AB, the Swedish private equity firm, is seeking to sell its business information group Bisnode.  The company is part of D&B’s worldwide network that keeps records on more than 150 million companies. Bisnode owns and operates D&B franchises in Germany, Switzerland, Austria, Scandinavia, Czech Republic, Hungary and Poland.  Bisnode earnings before interest, tax and amortisation (EBITA) were 593 million Swedish kroner ($79.9 million) last year, on revenue of 4.74 billion. It had net debt of 2.54 billion kroner as of end of June.

Ratos has hired JPMorgan to manage a sale of Stockholm-based Bisnode. The company, Ratos’s third-largest by sales last year, could fetch nearly $1 billion including debt.  Bisnode, a provider of marketing databases, credit reports and business data, could attract both private equity firms and trade rivals. The company is 70 percent owned by Ratos and 30 percent by Sweden’s family-owned Bonnier Group.  The sale comes three years after Ratos, the company’s majority owner since 2005, and dropped plans for a stock-market listing. Ratos pulled the planned flotation in October 2007, blaming market volatility for a lack of investor interest.   Source:  UK Finance Yahoo

BIIA Newsletter September II – 2010 Issue