Advent Said to Explore Sale of $1 Billion Cobham Antennas Unit

Advent International is exploring a sale of the communications and navigation division of Cobham Plc, according to people familiar with the matter, less than a year after acquiring the U.K. aerospace and defense supplier.

The private equity firm has invited initial offers from strategic and financial companies next week for Cobham Aerospace Connectivity, which could fetch as much as $1 billion, the people said, asking not to be identified discussing confidential information.

Cobham Aerospace Connectivity has around 750 employees, one of the people said. The unit manufactures antenna systems as well as radio, guidance and anti-jamming equipment for use on land, sea and in the air. It has earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization of about $80 million, the people said.

Advent is working with Goldman Sachs Group Inc. and Rothschild & Co. on the sale plans, according to the people. Deliberations are in the early stages and may not lead to a sale, they said. Representatives for Advent, Cobham, Goldman Sachs and Rothschild declined to comment.

U.S.-based Advent agreed to acquire Cobham for 4 billion pounds ($5.2 billion) in 2019 in what was one of the year’s largest takeovers of a U.K.-listed company by a buyout firm. The deal was completed in January.

Cobham traces its roots to the 1930s and employs more than 11,500 people globally, according to its website. The company’s technology is used in everything from fighter jets and warships to commercial airlines and robots used in space exploration. It hopes to leverage Advent’s U.S. ties to pick up contracts in the country.

©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

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