Apax Weighs Bid for Car-Sales Site BCA After Approach Is Spurned

(Bloomberg) -- Apax Partners LLP said it is considering an offer for BCA Marketplace Plc, owner of car-auction site webuyanycar.com, after a preliminary 1.6 billion-pound ($2.1 billion) proposal was rejected last month.

BCA surged to its highest ever after saying on Monday that it received a conditional approach on May 9 that valued the company at 200 pence a share. It rejected that offer “after careful consideration,” the company said.

Apax said separately that it’s in the early stages of considering an offer, raising the prospect of a higher bid. The private-equity firm has until July 8 to announce a firm offer or walk away.

BCA advanced as much as 12 percent to 236 pence, its highest level ever. The shares were up 7.6 percent to 227 pence at 8:08 a.m. in London. The stock is up 11 percent this year.

BCA said on April 11 that business was above company expectations in the second half of its fiscal year as more vehicle owners opt for a quick sale via the Internet rather than through traditional classified advertisements. The London-based company conducts physical and online auctions, and also offers fleet services, logistics and financing.

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