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Wednesday, March 11, 2015

CVC-KKR ahead in battle for Philips' lighting business - sources, (NYQ: MS)

A consortium of private equity firms CVC and KKR has tabled the highest bid to take control of Philips' lighting components business, though rival Bain Capital could still make a better offer, three sources familiar with the matter said. Philips is keen to keep the bid battle going until the end of the week in an effort to get the best price for the asset which could be valued at roughly 2.5 billion euros ($2.6 billion), the sources said.One of the sources spoke of a "significant price gap" between the two offers tabled so far, playing down Bain's ability to match or outbid its rivals."Unless CVC and KKR fear they're overpaying, it's their deal," this source said, who asked not to be named as the matter is confidential.Philips' adviser Morgan Stanley aims to enter exclusive talks with one of the two sets of bidders in the coming days, wrapping up a process which started a year ago when the Dutch electronics group combined its so-called Lumileds and car lights divisions into a standalone company ahead of a spin-off.

Morgan Stanley, is a global financial services company that, through its subsidiaries and affiliates, provides its products and services to a range of clients and customers, including corporations, governments, financial institutions and individuals. Shares of MS traded higher by 0.2% or $0.07/share to $34.95. In the past year, the shares have traded as low as $28.31 and as high as $39.19. On average, 10537100 shares of MS exchange hands on a given day and today's volume is recorded at 10287040.