Carlyle Group is understood to be about to sign a €900m (US$1.15bn) sales purchase agreement for the travel agency arm of Spanish tourism company Iberostar.
The Fluxa family, which founded Iberostar, is expected to use the proceeds from the sale to expand its hotels chain, which also trades as Iberostar.
Advised by Goldman Sachs, Carlyle is understood to be keen on expanding Iberostar’s tour operator arm using the experience gained by its ultimately unsuccessful exclusive negotiations to buy Grupo Occidental Hoteles, also for €900m, which fell through after hurricanes hit the Caribbean during the autumn. Goldman Sachs and staple finance provider Societe Generale are arranging the debt for Carlyle, while Clifford Chance, Aon and KPMG also worked on the deal.
Lazard ran the auction, which saw Apax Partners, Bridgepoint and Vista Capital miss out in the final round.
All parties contacted declined or were unavailable to comment.