Four companies submitted initial offers as EBS seeks to raise about €785 million to meet capital standards set by the country’s financial regulator. The company may choose a buyer by the end of August, said one person, who declined to comment because the process hasn’t yet been completed.
JC Flowers & Co, the US leveraged buyout firm, Doughty Hanson & Co, a British rival, Irish Life & Permanent Plc and Cardinal Asset Management are the four parties involved in the first round of bidding.
While the Government has already injected €350 million into the company, that may be repaid by the successful bidder. Cardinal Asset Management, led by Dublin-based financiers Nick Corcoran and Nigel McDermott, is backed by US buyout firm Carlyle Group, the person said.
Rosanna Konarzewski, a spokeswoman for Carlyle, declined to comment. It is understood Carlyle is supporting an expression of interest from Cardinal.
The regulator said in March that EBS needed additional capital of €875m.
The lender raised €90m through a debt buyback deal, said Gerry O’Sullivan, a spokesman for the company. He declined to comment on the sale process.
Doughty Hanson and Cardinal’s Mr McDermott didn’t immediately return calls seeking comment.