PAI Partners Said to Plan 180 Million-Euro IPH Buyout Financing

PAI Partners is said to be planning to raise 180 million euros ($235 million) of debt to back its buyout of IPH Group, a French distributor of industrial products.

The private-equity unit of insurer Axa SA is arranging the financing, according to two people with knowledge of the matter, who asked not to be identified because the deal is private. The deal is expected to sign next month and is structured as a so-called unitranche financing, a single facility blending senior and junior debt, the people said.

Rosanna Konarzewski, a PAI Partners spokeswoman in London, declined to comment on the buyout financing.

PAI Partners signed an agreement to buy the Lyon, France-based company from Investcorp Bank BSC, PAI said Dec. 21. IPH generated 895 million euros of sales in 2011, according to its website.

AXA’s private debt unit, which provided about 400 million euros of unitranche financing in 2011, has sought to increase lending to medium-sized companies filling a gap left by banks.

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