By Dow Jones Business News, October 29, 2013, 06:17:00 PM EDT
By Matt Jarzemsky
HCA Holdings Inc. ( HCA ) agreed to buy back $500 million of its stock from its private-equity backers, taking on a
portion of their latest big sale of the hospital operator's shares.
Private-equity firms KKR & Co. ( KKR ) and Bain Capital, which remain large investors in HCA after a 2006 buyout, plan
to sell 30 million shares in the hospital company to the public, according to a press release.
HCA has agreed to buy an additional $500 million in stock from the firms. The company sees the deal as a "prudent and
efficient structure to create value for shareholders," a spokesman said via e-mail.
HCA's shares dipped 0.2% after-hours to $47.25. Through Tuesday's close, the stock was up 57% so far in 2013.
Companies are unveiling the most share buybacks in years, even as equity indexes are at all-time highs, to appease
investors and put historically large cash hordes to work. Meanwhile, buyout firms have been taking advantage of the
rally in stocks rally to reap returns from prior years' investments.
KKR and Bain, which paid $2.31 billion for HCA in one of the biggest deals during the private-equity boom years, took
the company public in 2011. The firms sold a $1.06 billion stake in HCA in December and a $1.8 billion slug in February,
benefiting fro a steady rise in HCA's share price.
Overall, private-equity firms have sold a record $56 billion in stock in follow-on offerings this year, according to
The latest offering, managed by Goldman Sachs Group Inc., is slated to price before markets open Wednesday, a person
familiar with the deal said.
Prior to the deal's announcement, this year had seen U.S.-listed companies announce plans to buy back $620.8 billion
year-to-date, up 60% from the same period in 2012, according to Birinyi Associates Inc., which tracks buybacks. In all
of 2007, the biggest year ever for such activity, companies announced $862.9 billion in buybacks.
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