Ingram Micro's owner is in "advanced talks" to sell a majority stake in the distributor worth around $4bn, according to reports.
A group of investors, led by Asian private equity firm RRJ Capital, is finalising a deal to acquire a majority stake in Ingram Micro in a $4bn investment, according to reports by Reuters and Bloomberg.
Reuters claims a source with direct knowledge of RRJ's plan said the deal will be firmed up within a few days, and will involve the investor injecting funds via an HNA convertible bond that will give it control of Ingram Micro.
HNA, which holds $230bn in assets including hotels and logistics companies, acquired Ingram Micro for $6bn in 2016.
RRJ Capital's portfolio is significantly smaller than HNA's, with just $11bn-worth of assets under its management.
According to its website, RRJ focuses its investments in China and South-East Asia and is currently a team of just 35 staff based in Hong Kong and Singapore.
Rumours first circulated last year that HNA was planning to sell the $50bn-revenue distributor last year. In late December 2018, it publicly admitted it was in "preliminary talks" to sell Ingram Micro, seeking $7.5bn including $1.5bn in debt. News outlets cited Apollo Global Management as a potential buyer at the time.
Alex Tatham, MD of UK-based distributor Westcoast, said that Ingram Micro being up for sale for such a long time is damaging the firm.
"Something has to happen to Ingram Micro, because it's stagnating. Somebody needs to drive it through and inject some pace into it; it can't always be for sale," he said.
Ingram Micro isn't the only HNA property that's up for grabs. The Chinese firm has reportedly offloaded $43.6bn in asset sales since the start of 2018.
The US distributor has itself been acquisitive under HNA's ownership. In May, it acquired a Forcepoint, McAfee and F5 Networks distributor called Abbakan, in a bid to become EMEA's leading cybersecurity player.
CPI contacted Ingram Micro for comment on the rumoured sale, but did not receive a response at the time of publication.
Some say performance, others say money but it may be systems and processes that carry the day
Microsoft and Accenture entity buys up €12m firm
This week is the deadline for the Channel Innovation Awards. So, why is it worth celebrating innovation in the market today?
NTT Security CEO on the rise of 'bad-guys-as-a-service', Orange's security M&A spree and NTT's integration roadmap
In part one of CPI's Security Summit series, editor Josh Budd sits down with NTT Security's CEO Matt Gyde