Informa Gets $3.53 Billion Bid Interest From Providence, Carlyle

Informa, the UK-based B2B giant which just broke off its talks with UBM for a merger, now has another possible group of buyers: private equity groups Providence Equity Partners and Carlyle are working on a 1.8 billion pound ($3.53 billion) cash bid, according to the company. This would be among the biggest PE deals since the credit crunch crisis started marketwide.

Informa had a market cap of around 1.8 billion pounds on Thursday and 1.2 billion pounds of debt as at the end of 2007….some analysts question whether this bid would succeed in the current tight credit markets. According to Reuters, Numis analyst Paul Richards thinks this is a sign that Providence and Carlyle were trying to build a larger consortium to buy Informa before breaking it up, something that others have suggested before.