January 16, 2020 / 4:09 AM / 3 months ago

HK-based labelling firm SML seeks buyer in potential over-$500 mln deal -sources

HONG KONG, Jan 16 (Reuters) - Hong Kong-based labelling firm SML Group is seeking a buyer in a deal that could fetch more than $500 million, three people with knowledge of the plans told Reuters.

The firm has hired Citigroup to run a sale process that is mainly targeting private-equity firms and will kick off soon, the people said, on condition of anonymity as the information is confidential.

SML did not immediately respond to a request for comment. Citigroup declined to comment.

The plan to sell comes at a time when private equity firms in the region, flush with capital raised in the last few years, are scouting for buyout opportunities of quality assets.

A global business with offices and production sites in more than 30 countries, SML was founded in southern China in 1985 by Chairman Simon Suen. It offers label designs, packaging services and inventory management products, it says on its website.

Private equity firm Partners Group sold similar business Trimco International in January 2018 to peer Affinity Equity Partners for $520 million. (Reporting by Kane Wu; Editing by Himani Sarkar)

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