He is a man not used to being muscled off when he gets his chequebook out but Sir Martin Sorrell is now facing even more competition for DunnHumby following reports that another US private equity giant has entered the race for Tesco’s data giant.
According to The Sunday Times, Hellman & Friedman has joined the host of firms – including WPP – planning to splash the cash for DunnHumby, although given last week’s £1bn writedown, it will not be quite be the huge wad that Tesco boss Dave Lewis was hoping for.
As well as Hellman & Friedman and WPP, the full line up now includes: US-based buyout firm Clayton, Dubilier & Rice – which is advised by former Tesco chief Sir Terry Leahy – Advent International, General Atlantic Partners, KKR, Silver Lake Partners and Experian.
Following last week’s price cut – triggered by Tesco’s decision to end the US deal with retail giant Kroger – the DunnHumby could go for “as little” as £700m. However, that is not bad for a company which Tesco bought for just over £100m.
The auction, which will dwarf anything that Christie’s has ever handled, is expected to run alongside the sale of Tesco’s South Korean operation, worth up to £4bn.
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