DataRoom AM: MYOB float hype

Financiers rush to get in on MYOB's latest debt issue ahead of a possible float, while Careers Australia may soon join the IPO pipeline.

Bain Capital appears to have made another move towards a blockbuster 2015 float of MYOB and investment banks are clamouring for a piece of the action.

Elsewhere, Spark Infrastructure readies for the wave of government asset sales, New Hope Corporation chases acquisitions and Champ Private Equity eyes an ASX-listed plastics firm.

Accounting software group MYOB appears increasingly likely to return to the ASX boards next year after seven investment banks made a play for a slice of a $640 million refinancing at the group this week, The Australian Financial Review reports. The Bain Capital-owned MYOB also tapped a large consortium of retail banks on the deal, with the heavy interest from investment banks in the relatively small deal seen tied to an early push for a seat at the table should a potential $3 billion listing take place in 2015.

Bain purchased MYOB from Archer Capital in 2011 for $1.2bn after Archer had taken the group private in a $382m deal in 2009.

Also in the IPO market, Queensland-based Careers Australia is set to join the swelling IPO pipeline after tapping Morgan Stanley to gauge investor interest in a float. It is not yet clear when the training and services provider will look to list, though the recent softness in the market will be raising some concerns for all IPO candidates.

Another potential 2014 float is that of seafood group Huon Aquaculture, which the AFR reports is seeking to raise $125m through a bookbuild next week that will value the firm at close to $400m prior to hitting ASX boards on October 23.

Meanwhile, Spark Infrastructure has started negotiations with potential joint venture partners on plans to claim a slice of New South Wales’ $20bn ‘poles and wires’ assets. The AFR reports that Australian and North American pension funds are at the heart of the negotiations as an auction process nears for TransGrid, Ausgrid and Endeavour Energy.

Elsewhere, coal miner New Hope Corporation appears ready to use its $1.1bn war chest to go on the hunt for distressed mining assets in the wake of a prolonged slump in the price of coal.

“The current state of the market is what New Hope has been waiting for,” the firm’s boss, Shane Stephan, told Bloomberg, with Australia likely its first port of call for expansion.

Also in mining, Indophil Resources’ board has unanimously backed a $361m bid for control of the company from Philippines-based Alsons Prime Investments Corp, while Sundance Resources has welcomed Ukrainian billionaire Gennadiy Bogolyubov as a new significant shareholder after he put up $40m to help fund Sundance’s African projects.

Closer to home, Champ Private Equity is weighing a bid for Nuplex Industries’ resins unit, which provides the bulk of the $550m group’s sales. NZ-based Nuplex, which is listed in Australia, may also be in the sights of another private equity firm, the AFR speculates.

In property, Stockland has confirmed it is pressing forward with an exit from the UK, with its final two assets set to be sold by June next year. A $40m retail centre and a $25m warehouse facility form the bulk of what’s left from its troubled foray into Britain.

Finally, QBE Insurance has increased the size of its share purchase plan from $160m to $200m on strong demand, while investment bank Moelis & Co has abandoned the planned $300m listing of an investment company, which was to be known as Global Wealth Partners.

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