Despite being in the process of auctioning its lighting business, Royal Philips Electronics (Philips) has filed draft documents with the Dutch government for a potential initial public offering, according to a Bloomberg article. Philips privately filed the documents with Dutch market regulator Autoriteit Financieele Markten, or AFM seeking an opinion before submitting a formal application, according to the article which cited unnamed sources who are familiar with the matter.
In the filing, Philips named Citigroup Inc., Morgan Stanley & Co LLC, Societe Generale SA, and ING Groep NV as joint bookrunners for the potential IPO. Cooperatieve Rabobank ABN and Amro Group NV were named joint co-bookrunners.
CFO Frans van Houten reportedly intends to focus the company on healthcare. The company has kept its options open regarding how the sale will be implemented. The article stated that that JP Morgan Chase & Co. and Goldman Sachs Group Inc. are running a “dual track” process to explore a direct sale to a private equity investor while Philips also named the banks for a possible stock market listing.
Philips indicated that it intends to complete the lighting business divestment in the first half of 2016. One potential bidder has pulled out of the auction for the lighting business, Melrose Industries Plc. Philips is delaying the direct sales process and has postponed final bids one week until April 18th.
Industry experts have previously estimated that the sale price of the lighting firm could reach about 5 billion euros ($5.7 billion).