Exclusive: Bain, Advent cancel sale of WorldPay's U.S. unit
By Greg Roumeliotis
NEW YORK (Reuters) - WorldPay's private equity owners, Bain Capital LLC and Advent International Corp, have canceled the auction of the payment processing firm's U.S. unit, WorldPay told Reuters on Friday.
No potential buyer was willing to meet Bain's and Advent's price expectations of $800 million to $1 billion, sources familiar with the matter said.
The buyout firms bought 80 percent of WorldPay from Royal Bank of Scotland Group Plc (RBS.L: Quote) in 2010 for about 2 billion pounds ($3 billion) and were looking to sell WorldPay's U.S. assets to pay themselves a dividend and pay off debt.
Thomas H. Lee Partners LP, CVC Capital Partners Ltd CVC.UL and Thoma Bravo LLC were among the private equity firms in discussions with WorldPay about a deal, the sources said.
Thomas H. Lee explored a partnership with iPayment, a New-York-based company that provides credit and debit card payment processing services to small businesses, in order to acquire WorldPay U.S., said the sources, speaking on condition of anonymity because details of the auction are confidential.
WorldPay U.S. has earning before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) of between $90 and $130 million, depending on how its business is accounted for, making its valuation contentious, the sources said.
"Following a strategic review of WorldPay U.S., we have concluded that the growth potential and value of the business will be maximized by remaining part of WorldPay Group," WorldPay spokesman Simon Kutner told Reuters in an email on Friday. He declined to comment on details of the auction.
Bain, Advent, Thomas H. Lee Partners, Thoma Bravo and CVC declined to comment. An iPayment official did not respond to a request for comment. Continued...