By Arno Schuetze, Liana B. Baker and Pamela Barbaglia
FRANKFURT/SAN FRANCISCO/LONDON (Reuters) - Buyout funds Hellman & Friedman and Vista Equity Partners have made rival bids for German business software maker TeamViewer in a deal worth more than $2 billion, sources close to the matter told Reuters.
Permira, which has controlled the Goeppingen-based business since 2014, is working with investment banking boutique Qatalyst Partners, a San Francisco-based technology-focused advisory firm, to evaluate rival takeover proposals which were recently submitted by the two U.S. funds, the sources said.
A decision could be made soon, two of the sources said, adding discussions are in the final stages.
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Permira and Hellman & Friedman declined to comment while Qatalyst and Vista had no immediate comment.
London-based Permira bought TeamViewer for 870 million euros ($1 billion) in 2014 and, if pressing ahead with a sale, it could fetch a multiple of more than 13 times the company's expected core earnings of 130 million euros in 2017, one of the sources said.
Listed peers such as Citrix and LogMeIn trade at 12.5 to 15 times their expected core earnings.
Permira was approached earlier this year by a series of interested parties including European buyout funds EQT and Cinven which later dropped out, one of the sources said, adding no formal auction process had been launched.
EQT and Cinven declined to comment.
Qatalyst reached out to some tech giants including Microsoft, Salesforce and Softbank to try to interest them in bidding, another source said, but the deal failed to whet their appetite. Microsoft, Salesforce and SoftBank were not immediately available for comment.
TeamViewer provides remote desktop access as well as web conferencing and file transfer between computers and competes with Microsoft, Symantec and Cisco.
The business says it serves 90 percent of Fortune 500 firms and counts 20 million active users at any given time.
TeamViewer reported revenues of 171 million euros in 2016 and earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortization (EBITDA) of 107 million euros.
($1 = 0.8525 euros)
(Additional reporting by Eric Auchard in Frankfurt; Editing by Adrian Croft)