The up to £1.9 billion RBS WorldPay leveraged buyout was not only the second-biggest LBO in Europe in 2010 (after Tomkins), but it achieved this by skilfully tapping into the wave of appetite for leveraged loans that had been building throughout the region all year.
RBS WorldPay sale to Bain/Advent
£2 billion LBO
UBS (WorldPay), Credit Suisse (Bain/Advent)
The deal itself was required as one of the remedies demanded by the European Commission for the £54 billion of state aid that RBS has received from the UK government. The bank remains a minority (20%) shareholder in the business, which generated operating profits of £249 million in 2009 and is Europe’s largest payments processor. When the deal was announced it attracted strong interest from private equity buyers – which had money to burn as a legacy of their pre-2007 fundraising but were short of quality opportunities in Europe.
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