UPDATE 1-Colfax to sell air and gas unit in $1.8 bln deal to pay down debt

(Reuters) – Welding and valves manufacturer Colfax Corp said on Thursday it had agreed to sell its air and gas handling unit to private equity firm KPS Capital Partners in a deal valued at $1.8 billion. Reuters had reported on Sunday about the potential deal. The deal, which is expected to close in the second half of this year, includes $1.66 billion in cash and $140 million in debt and minority interest. Colfax had $1.2 billion in debt as of Dec. 31. “This transaction will position us to achieve our leverage target and pursue strategic bolt-on acquisitions in our Medical Technology and Fabrication Technology segments,” Colfax Chief Executive Officer Matt Trerotola said. Colfax’s air and gas handling unit provides heavy-duty centrifugal and axial cooling fans, rotary heat exchangers, gas compressors and ventilation control systems. Goldman Sachs & Co LLC is the lead financial adviser to Colfax.

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