Styron Corp. is planning an initial public offering less than nine months after Bain Capital LLC bought the company from Dow Chemical Co. (DOW) for $1.63 billion, said two people with knowledge of the matter.
Banks are being interviewed to handle a share sale, said the people, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because the talks are private. Dow Chemical, based in Midland, Michigan, still has a 7.5 percent stake in Styron, the world’s largest producer of polystyrene.
A Styron IPO would be an unusually quick turnaround for a leveraged buyout firm such as Bain, which typically holds investments for three or more years. This week HCA Holdings Inc., a hospital company that Bain helped take private in 2006, is offering shares to the public.
Among the biggest private equity-backed companies that have registered with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission for an IPO in the past six months are Kinder Morgan Inc., taken private in 2007; Freescale Semiconductor Inc., from 2006; and Kosmos Energy Ltd., from 2004.
Styron is likely to pick underwriters in the next few weeks, the people said. Any share sale would be subject to market conditions.
Dow Chemical put Styron up for sale last year to raise cash following its 2009 acquisition of Rohm and Haas Co. for $15.7 billion. Bain won a bidding contest with TPG Capital over the Styron buyout, one of the people said.
A spokesman for Bain and a spokeswoman for Styron declined to comment.
Bain used about $650 million of its own money for the June 2010 purchase of Styron, according to Standard & Poor’s. It funded the rest from debt arranged by Deutsche Bank AG, HSBC Holdings Plc, Barclays Plc and Bank of Montreal. Styron refinanced the debt last month in order to pay its owners a $400 million dividend, Standard & Poor’s said.
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