Blackstone, PAI eye United Biscuits sale -source

* Private equity owners considering post-summer sale -source

* McVitie’s maker posted 223 mln pounds EBITDA in 2009

LONDON, July 21 (BestGrowthStock) – Private equity firms Blackstone
Group LP (BX.N: ) and PAI Partners are considering selling
Britain’s United Biscuits for more than 2 billion pounds ($3.06
billion), a person familiar with the matter said on Wednesday.

The duo have spoken to banks but have yet to pick advisers
for a possible sale, which would probably begin after the
European summer holidays and wrap up early in 2011, the person
added.

Blackstone and its French partner bought the maker of
McVitie’s biscuits and Jacob’s cream crackers for 1.6 billion
pounds in late 2006. Listed rival Premier Foods Plc (PFD.L: ) had
also considered bidding for United, which is based in Hayes,
near London.

United, Britain’s biggest snack-maker, reported a 13.7
percent rise in earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and
amortisation (EBITDA) last year to 223.4 million pounds, on
revenues up 5 percent at 1.26 billion.

JPMorgan advised the duo on the 2006 purchase, while Goldman
Sachs advised United Biscuits.

Blackstone and PAI declined to comment.

News of the possible sale comes amid a pick-up in dealmaking
involving food companies and buyout firms. Earlier this week
Unilever sold its Italian frozen-foods unit Findus to Birds Eye
Iglo, which is owned by Permira [PERM.UL]. [ID:nLDE66I0KH]

Stock Market News

(Reporting by Quentin Webb; additional reporting by Victoria
Howley, editing by Will Waterman)
($1=.6534 Pound)

Blackstone, PAI eye United Biscuits sale -source