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Private Equity Funds To Pay More For Hub

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A U.S. investment bank and a British private equity firm have agreed to pay more for Hub International Ltd., a large insurance broker, to beat out competing bids.

Hub, Chicago, sells life insurance, health insurance and employee benefits as well as property-casualty insurance.

After private equity funds advised by a unit of Apax Partners L.P., London, and an investment company affiliated with Morgan Stanley & Company Inc., New York, agreed to acquire Hub for $1.8 billion in late February, other would-be buyers submitted proposals, according to Hub.

The Apax funds and Morgan Stanley have increased to increase their offer to $41.50 per share, from $40 per share, in response to the competing bids, Hub says.

The change increases the total value of the proposed deal to about $1.9 billion, from $1.8 billion.

If Hub walks away from the deal, it might have to pay a break-up fee with a value of about $53 million, Hub says.

The Hub board still hopes to complete the Apax-Morgan Stanley deal by June 30.

The deal is subject to shareholder approval, Canadian court approval and other regulatory approvals.