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CVC Said to Hire CIMB to Arrange Loan Package for KFC Buyout

CVC Capital Partners Ltd. hired CIMB Group Holdings Bhd. to arrange a finance package to fund its takeover of KFC Holdings (Malaysia) Bhd., according to two people familiar with the matter.

CVC announced Dec 14. that it has teamed up with Johor Corp. to bid at least $1.6 billion for KFC Holdings (Malaysia) and parent QSR Brands Bhd. in a deal that would hand it control of more than 900 fast-food outlets, including KFC and Pizza Hut, in Southeast Asia and India.

CIMB has agreed to underwrite and organize the facility, which will probably be marketed to a wider group of lenders in the new year, one of the people said, asking not to be identified because the discussions are private. Details including the acquisition loan’s size and maturity have yet to be decided, the person said.

A spokesman for CVC in Malaysia was unavailable to comment immediately on the acquisition financing when contacted by telephone in Kuala Lumpur today.

KFC Malaysia operates more than 620 fried-chicken outlets in Malaysia, Singapore, Brunei, Cambodia and India, according to its website. The company also has 29 RasaMas restaurants and 55 chicken stores, as well as farming and food manufacturing operations, it said. QSR Brands operates about 260 Pizza Hut restaurants in Malaysia and Singapore, according to its website.

Malaysian state investment company Johor Corp. is the biggest shareholder of palm-oil producer Kulim Malaysia Bhd., which already owns 54 percent of QSR Brands, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. Buyout firm CVC owns 49 percent of the takeover vehicle and Johor Corp. holds the rest, yesterday’s regulatory filings show.

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