InComm, a provider of prepaid gift cards, is working with Credit Suisse Group AG and Deutsche Bank AG on a 2015 initial public offering or sale that may value it at as much as $3 billion, people with knowledge of the matter said.
The company is preparing documents for a $400 million IPO that could take place in the second half of the year, one of the people said, asking not to be identified discussing private information. InComm, which is backed by Warburg Pincus, is simultaneously considering an outright sale, in what’s known as a dual-track process, the people said.
The sale process is at an early stage and InComm is expected to begin reaching out to potential buyers soon, the people said.
The company would follow Transfirst Inc. and Mercury Payment, both payments companies backed by private equity that conducted a dual-track process. The tactic is popular because it pressures would-be buyers to act before a company is publicly traded -- potentially complicating any takeover.
Representatives for Warburg Pincus, Deutsche Bank and Credit Suisse declined to comment. A representative for InComm didn’t respond to requests for comment.
InComm distributes gift cards at Target Corp., Best Buy Co., and other retailers. The Atlanta-based company sold a minority stake in 2012 to Warburg Pincus, the New York-based private-equity firm, and it has held merger talks in the past with Blackhawk Network Holdings Inc., its closest direct competitor in the U.S., people familiar with the matter said in January.
Blackhawk raised $264 million in an April 2013 IPO. Its shares have surged about 58 percent since then, valuing the company at about $2 billion.