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Blue Bird Said to Kick Off Biggest Indonesia IPO in Three Years

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Oct. 30 (Bloomberg) -- Blue Bird Group, attempting Indonesia’s largest initial public offering in almost three years, started gauging investor demand for its about $450 million sale, said two people with knowledge of matter.

Blue Bird, the country’s largest taxi operator, will begin taking orders from investors early next month, said the people, who asked not to be identified as the information is private. The offering includes new stock and shares being sold by existing investors, they said.

At $450 million, Blue Bird would be Indonesia’s largest IPO since state-owned airline PT Garuda Indonesia’s $524 million sale in January 2011, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. First-time offers have raised $1.4 billion on the Indonesia Stock Exchange this year, up from $679 million in the same period of 2012, the data show.

Blue Bird President Director Purnomo Prawiro declined to comment in an e-mailed reply to questions.

The company, majority-owned by the Djokosoetono family, operates about 28,900 vehicles, more than three times its closest rival PT Express Transindo Utama. Shares of Express Transindo, which has a market value of 3.3 trillion rupiah ($297 million), have jumped 79 percent this year, outperforming the Jakarta Composite Index’s 5.7 percent gain.

Blue Bird, which started in 1972 with 25 taxis, is named after a European fairy tale about a girl and a blue bird who worked tirelessly to find happiness, according to its website.

Credit Suisse Group AG, UBS AG and Danareksa Sekuritas are managing the IPO, the people said.

To contact the reporters on this story: Joyce Koh in Singapore at jkoh38@bloomberg.net; Fox Hu in Hong Kong at fhu7@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Philip Lagerkranser at lagerkranser@bloomberg.net