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Last Updated: Wednesday, 27 April, 2005, 15:58 GMT 16:58 UK
For sale sign hung over Kwik-Fit
Kwik-Fit site
Kwik-Fit has changed hands twice since 1999
The owner of UK car tyre and exhaust service Kwik-Fit is to sell the business after deciding not to float it on the stock market.

The investment group CVC Capital Partners hopes to raise as much as 800m ($1.52bn) from the sale.

Kwik-Fit, which is based in West Lothian, has 2,300 sites across the UK, France, Germany and the Netherlands.

Details were sent to a number of potential bidders on Wednesday, a source close to the firm told the BBC.

Several buy-out firms are thought to be interested.

Motor trade companies including Michelin or Bridgestone could also be interested.

In March, CVC said it had appointed Deutsche Bank to advise it on a possible sale or flotation of Kwik-Fit.

Changing hands

Analysts say Kwik-Fit would make an attractive target for buy-out firms as its strong cash flows would make it easier to finance any deal.

In its latest published results, the company reported turnover of 854.6m for the year ending 31 December 2003.

Known in the UK for its "You can't get better than a Kwik-Fit fitter" advertising slogan, Kwik-Fit is Europe's largest independent auto parts, repair and replacement specialist.

The company, founded by Sir Tom Farmer, opened its first outlet in Edinburgh in 1971 and currently has 11,000 employees.

In 1999, it was bought by US car maker Ford, who then sold it to CVC three years later.


SEE ALSO:
Kwik-Fit will be floated or sold
23 Feb 05 |  Business


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