Friday, September 10, 2010

Private Equity Exit: Carlyle’s BankUnited Said to Seek More Than $500 Million in IPO

Bloomberg News

Sept. 9 (Bloomberg) -- BankUnited, the Florida lender owned by investors including Blackstone Group LP, Carlyle Group and WL Ross & Co., plans to raise more than $500 million when it offers shares to the public, said people with knowledge of the matter.

The initial public offering would raise capital for acquisitions, while returning some cash to the owners, said the people, who spoke on condition of anonymity because the plans are private. Current investors, who also include Centerbridge Capital Partners, would see their stake diluted by about one- third, the people said.

Bloomberg News reported in August that the Miami Lakes, Florida-based lender was planning an IPO. Spokespeople for the bank’s private-equity investors declined to comment today or didn’t return calls seeking comment.

BankUnited was shut by federal regulators and sold to the buyout group in May 2009, two months after investors including J.C. Flowers & Co. bought California’s IndyMac Bank and pumped $1.55 billion into the lender. John Kanas, 63, the former head of North Fork Bancorp, was named the Florida lender’s chief executive officer.

To contact the reporter on this story: Cristina Alesci in New York at