By Kane Wu and Yantoultra Ngui
HONG KONG/SINGAPORE, Dec 1 (Reuters) - China's state-owned Beijing Capital Group has hired Citigroup C.N to sell its wholly-owned Singapore waste management company ECO in a deal that could fetch $300 million to $400 million, said two sources with knowledge of the matter.
Beijing Capital bought the business from private equity firm Navis Capital for S$246 million in 2015, Navis Capital said at the time.
The sale process is in the early stages, said one of the sources.
Potential buyers for the asset would include private equity funds and companies in similar industries, said a third source familiar with the situation.
Beijing Capital did not immediately respond to a faxed query for comment. A receptionist at the group said no one was available to comment in response to a Reuters call.
ECO Special Waste Management didn't immediately respond to a request seeking comment. Citi declined to comment.
All of the sources declined to be identified as the information was confidential.
The sale comes amid increasing investor interest in Southeast Asia's waste management sector, due to the region's rapid growth in population and a shift towards greener and cleaner energy and environment.
Last year, Singapore's asset manager Keppel consortium bought a 80% stake in environmental services firm 800 Super Holdings for S$304 million.
Beijing Capital, based in China's capital city, operates in the wastewater treatment, water construction, and real estate development businesses in China.
The company also has businesses in financial services and culture and sports sectors, its website shows.
ECO, founded in 1997, provides waste management services in Singapore with a fleet of over 40 vehicles, according to its website.
The company was fined S$230,000 in 2019 for unsafe work practices that led to fire at its hazardous waste treatment facility in Tuas, Singapore in 2017, according to a statement from the city-state's manpower ministry at that time.
(Reporting by Kane Wu in Hong Kong and Yantoultra Ngui in Singapore; additional reporting by Ziyi Tang in Beijing; Editing by Kim Coghill)
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