GE Capital Reportedly In Talks to Sell its Australian Businesses

GE Capital Reportedly In Talks to Sell its Australian Businesses
By General Electric Company (w:File:General_Electric_logo.svg) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

GE Capital is negotiating with Sankaty Advisors and Deutsche Bank regarding the sale of its lending and leasing businesses in Australia, according to a report from the New York Times based on information from a person familiar with the situation.

The report indicated that GE Capital’s negotiation involves the remaining portion of its series of auctions for its Australian financial assets this year, which included its consumer lending and fleet financing. Morgan Stanley is managing the auction for GE Capital.

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GE Capital selected Sankaty and Deutsche Bank as preferred final bidder

The source said GE Capital selected Deutsche Bank and Sankaty, the distressed debt investing affiliates of Bain Capital, as its final preferred bidder for its Australian businesses with an estimated book value of around $1.8 billion. These businesses included the private plane financing, equipment rental, lending for working capital and leverage loans businesses.

GE Capital’s negotiations with Deutsche Bank and Sankaty is ongoing for more than a week now, according to the person, who requested anonymity. Sankaty is expected to manage the businesses while Deutsche Bank will provide advice and financing for the acquisition if the parties reached agreement.

According to the source, Lone Star, a US-based private equity firm specializing in distressed investments will be given the opportunity to acquire GE Capital’s Australian businesses if its negotiation with Deutsche Bank and Sankaty falters.

GE Capital previous transactions

General Electric has been reducing the size and complexity of its business operations to focus on its healthcare and industrial businesses. The company is selling most of the assets (worth $200 billion) of GE Capital.

GE Capital sold consumer lending businesses in Australia and New Zealand to Deutsche Bank, Varde Partners, and Kohlberg Kravis Roberts for $6.3 billion in March.

In June, the company also agreed to sell its fleet-financing business in Austria, New Zealand, Mexico, and the United States to Element Corporation of Canada for $6.9 billion.

In August, Goldman Sachs Bank USA agreed to acquire the online deposit accounts and online deposit platform of GE Capital Bank. It would assume total expected deposits of around $16 billion.

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