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Report: U.S. fund Advent and Brazilian firm Cielo interested in buying Prisma

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Report: U.S. fund Advent and Brazilian firm Cielo interested in buying Prisma

U.S. investment fund Advent International Corp. and the Brazilian card payment firm Cielo S.A., whose main shareholders are banking giants Banco do Brasil SA and Banco Bradesco SA, are the likeliest suitors to acquire the Argentine credit card and payment processing network Prisma Medios de Pago SA, according to a report by El Cronista, citing unnamed market sources.

Goldman Sachs was chosen to administer the sale of Prisma, which is owned by Visa International and 14 Argentine banks and will be dissolved in order to spur competition in the local financial sector. The U.S.-based bank was instructed to find a buyer for Prisma no later than September 2018, but the market reportedly expects the deal to happen before that, with a price tag reportedly close to $1.50 billion.

According to El Cronista's sources, Goldman Sachs will move fast and eyes mid-November as a start of negotiations where Advent and Cielo would be the "big favorites" in a deal that could go through by June of next year.

The buyer is expected to fulfill three requirements, according to the publication: Have industry specialization in payment services, knowledge of investment in Argentina, and a financial capacity to pay between $500 million and $1 billion to acquire a 51% stake in Prisma.

The market sources consider Advent and Cielo the only players to fulfill all three requirements, the report said.