Scandinavian companies eye Royal Mail

According to reports, merging postal companies Post Denmark and Posten AB could be interested in acquiring 30% of Royal Mail.

According to reports, merging postal companies Post Denmark and Posten AB could be interested in acquiring 30% of Royal Mail.

The Daily Telegraph reported that “Post Danmark and Posten AB of Sweden, which are in the process of merging, are understood to have registered an interest in forming a strategic partnership with Royal Mail that could result in the combined entity acquiring 30% in the British company”.

On 23 February, the newspaper went on to say: “Prime minister Gordon Brown and Lord Mandelson, the business secretary, are determined to push ahead with the partial sell-off despite a growing rebellion among backbench Labour MPs.”

“UBS, the investment bank, has been hired by the government to evaluate interest from prospective bidders. TNT, has appointed Goldman Sachs to advise it on the situation, while this week FedEx, was understood to have engaged JP Morgan to examine whether a bid for Royal Mail’s parcels business, GLS, would be viable.”

“CVC Capital Partners, the private equity group, is also interested in the Royal Mail stake. Earlier this month, CVC sold its 22% shareholding in Post Danmark to the Danish government and in turn struck a deal to acquire Post Danmark’s stake in De Post – La Poste, Belgium’s national postal service provider.”

“It was unclear last night whether CVC would pursue an offer for the Royal Mail stake alone or with a partner such as the merged Danish and Swedish post offices.”

“The interest from potential bidders comes as Royal Mail’s pension trustees prepare to calculate their triennial valuation of the company’s pension deficit. The latest valuation, which will be confirmed later this year, is likely to have reached a figure of between £8bn [$10.27bn] and £9bn [$11.55bn], against £3.4bn [$4.36] in March 2006.”

“Royal Mail declined to comment.”

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