By Oliver Hirt and Arno Schuetze
ZURICH/FRANKFURT (Reuters) - Landis+Gyr is almost certain to opt for a planned public listing of its shares instead of a straight sale of the company, three sources familiar with the matter told Reuters.
The Swiss smart meter maker, majority-owned by Japan's Toshiba <6502.T>, had pursued a "dual track" approach of preparing for an initial public offering (IPO) while leaving the door open for an outright sale.
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However, the company now appears set to go down the IPO track after the two final bidders for the company were not willing to match the price Toshiba expects to receive through the public listing, one of the sources said.
"Because of the strong demand there's a 99.9 percent chance the IPO will be completed," another source said.
The sources declined to be identified because they were not authorized to speak publicly on the deal.
A spokesman for Landis+Gyr said a simple sale of the company was still an option.
The IPO price range was set last week at 70 to 82 Swiss francs per share, giving a market value of between 2.1 billion francs and 2.4 billion francs ($2.5 billion).
A third source familiar with the matter expected the shares to sell in the top third of that range.
The shares are due to start trading on the SIX Swiss Exchange on July 21.
Toshiba is seeking to unload assets after warning its loss for the past year would balloon due to potential legal damages over a $1.3 billion accounting scandal and an increase in its now-bankrupt U.S. nuclear unit's liabilities.
(Writing by Joshua Franklin; Editing by Mark Potter)