KKR in talks for control of Firstsource-sources

MUMBAI, April 13 (BestGrowthStock) – U.S. private-equity firm
Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co (KKR.AS: ) is in talks to buy a
controlling stake in Indian back-office service provider
Firstsource Solutions (FISO.BO: ), three sources with direct
knowledge of the matter said.
KKR is negotiating to buy a stake totalling about 68 percent
of the IT services company from No. 2 Indian lender ICICI Bank
(ICBK.BO: ), Singapore state investor Temasek Holdings [TEM.UL]
and U.S.-based banking technology group Metavante, the sources
said.

A deal has not been finalised, but a sale price could be
about $250 million, said two of the sources. None of the
sources wished to be named as they were not authorised to speak
to the media.

Firstsource has a market value of $300 million.

The three sources characterised KKR as the frontrunner for
Firstsource. Another source familiar with the matter said KKR
was in talks for Firstsource but did not agree that the buyout
firm is the frontrunner and declined to elaborate.

Rival U.S. private-equity firm Carlyle Group [CYL.UL] was
also eyeing the stake, but was not a strong contender in the
process, two of the sources said.

Carlyle declined to comment.

It could not be determined whether there were other bidders
pursuing Firstsource.

“ICICI Bank has stated consistently that its investment in
Firstsource is a financial investment and the bank would look
at reducing its holding over a period of time. The bank
evaluates all opportunities on an ongoing basis,” ICICI said in
a statement e-mailed to Reuters.

Firstsource and KKR declined to comment.

Temasek declined to comment and Metavante could not be
reached for comment.

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(Reporting by Pratish Narayanan and Indulal P.M.; Additional
reporting by Saeed Azhar; Editing by Tony Munroe)

KKR in talks for control of Firstsource-sources