Australian infrastructure investment group Macquarie is set to team up with U.S. bank JP Morgan in a £4 billion (US$8 billion) bid battle for Britain's Southern Water, The Telegraph reported on its website.
JP Morgan Asset Management's infrastructure investment fund has been in advanced talks to submit a joint offer with Macquarie and several other smaller funds, the report said citing sources.
The Australian investment firm's joint bid is expected to run into opposition by British regulators as this means Macquarie could hold shares of two UK utility companies. It bought Thames Water for £8 billion (US$16 billion) in 2006 from Germany's RWE.
In the article, The Telegraph said it is understood that Macquarie is acting primarily as an adviser to a consortium, although its funds could also take a small slice of equity.
Macquarie and JP Morgan both reportedly declined to comment.