Carlyle Group seeks buyer for Horizon Lines
The Carlyle Group, a private equity company in Washington, D.C., is looking to sell Horizon Lines, a U.S. ocean carrier with ships operating in the Jones Act trade, investment bankers in New York told Shippers' News Wire.
The Carlyle Group bought Horizon Lines, then known as CSX Lines, for about $300 million in February 2003. Carlyle recently asked Goldman, Sachs & Co. to prepare a proposal for interested parties who might want to provide 'a written, preliminary non-binding indication of interest' in acquiring Horizon Lines, according to the preface of the proposal.
While no purchase price is mentioned in the proposal, two financial sources cited $500 million as being a plausible bid.
Horizon's revenue increases were well above expectations in 2003 for all of the company's divisions. Carlyle's intent may be 'to divest itself of Horizon while it's on a roll,' one source said.
The principal corporate officers in the companies involved, including Gregory Ledford, managing director for transportation in The Carlyle Group; Charles G. 'Chuck' Raymond, chairman, president and chief executive officer of Horizon Lines; and Michael Carr, managing director of Goldman, Sachs, had no comment on the proposal.