Private equity buys into Italian fintech TAS Group, launches bid

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MILAN (Reuters) - Italian fintech company TAS Group said on Thursday a vehicle controlled by European private equity firm Gilde would launch a takeover bid for its shares at 2.2 euros each after taking control of its top shareholder.

Gilde Buy Out Partners aims to delist TAS Group from the Milan Stock Exchange. It agreed to acquire OWL, that controls 73.2% of TAS Group, valuing the stake 134.5 million euros ($156.61 million).

Shares in TAS, which develops software for payments and banking, jumped 4.85% to 2.16 euros at 0810 GMT on the Milan Stock Exchange.

TAS is Gilde's first investment in Italy, "a key geography", Giuseppe Franze, partner of Gilde and head of Italy, said in a statement. The fund will support TAS in developing the business also through acquisitions, he added.

The closing of the deal is subject to a number of conditions including clearance by regulators pursuant to golden power regulations in Italy and France.

($1 = 0.8588 euros)

(Reporting by Maria Pia Quaglia; editing by David Evans)

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