Private equity is finally locked and loaded for some huge IPOs

Private equity firms could be close to an IPO spree as they look to exit some monster investments in the fourth quarter.
From payments processor First Data to broadcaster Univision, companies could raise billions in the coming months. Some of these are assets held onto — and marked down — in the wake of the financial crisis.

Now with high market valuations behind them, the investment firms are looking to finally book some profits.

Of course, it’s not entirely up to the sellers. The best laid IPO plans could be derailed by market volatility as investors wrestle with Federal Reserve policy and global economic concerns.
The funds could also have another trick up their sleeves: IPO filings are sometimes followed by outright sales of companies instead of a trading debut. One IPO on the docket for this year has already used this so-called dual-track tactic once, winding up sold to a high bidder instead of in public hands.

But the PE firms have recent success to point to as they push for exits. Several big deals in the past two years, like that of Blackstone Group’s investment in Hilton Hotel, have been followed by rising shares (and on-paper valuations) of the investments.

Here are some of the biggest IPOs expected to be come down the pipeline later this year:

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