Blackstone Group and KKR, defendants in a lawsuit alleging a group of private-equity firms colluded to keep leveraged-buyout prices low, are in talks to settle with the plaintiffs, according to two people familiar with the matter.
Bloomberg News reports that lawyers for the firms, which are among the biggest alternative-asset managers, are assessing whether they can reach settlement terms before the lawsuit is set to go to trial in Boston federal court in November, said the people, who requested anonymity because the case is ongoing. Blackstone and KKR may negotiate a joint settlement, the people said.
Dow Jones reported last week that the two firms are in talks to settle the case, citing unidentified sources.
A settlement by Blackstone and KKR would leave two remaining defendants, Carlyle Group and TPG Capital, in the seven-year-old case. A federal judge dismissed suits against defendants including Apollo Global Management LLC and Providence Equity Partners over the past two years. Silver Lake Management LLC, Goldman Sachs’s private-equity unit and Bain Capital Partners LLC settled in the range of $29.5m to $67m in the past two months.
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