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LDC, Lloyds Banking Group’s private equity arm, is in talks to acquire legal outsourcing giant CPA Global for £400 million, reports the NY Times Deal Book. However, a CPA Global spokesman declined to comment on market rumors. He stated that CPA Global was speaking with a number of potential investors, but did not enumerate further.
In September, Bar & Bench had reported CPA Global’s plans to sell a 25 per cent stake to a private equity player in order to fund its plans for further expansion and growth. The current talks involving a complete acquisition by LDC comes as a surprise, since CPA’s CEO Peter Sewell had previously termed such an arrangement “unlikely”.
Lloyds TSB, one of the largest banks in the UK, is effectively under Government control after being bailed out with taxpayers’ money by the British Treasury in March this year. LDC’s acquisition of CPA may not receive an entirely favourable reaction from its largest shareholder, as one of the terms of the state-funded bailout was increased lending to small businesses and individuals, rather than leveraging big buyouts.