(Reuters) - Canadian industrial auctioneer Ritchie Bros Auctioneers Inc <RBA.TO> said it will buy IronPlanet, a privately held U.S. e-commerce site for used equipment, for about $758.5 million, as it looks to diversify its portfolio.
Burnaby, Vancouver-based Ritchie, which focuses on the sale of heavy machinery, will fund the transaction with a combination of cash and new debt.
IronPlanet, backed by Caterpillar Inc <CAT.N>, allows users to place bids online or on-site, or buy at a fixed price. It offers a multi-channel platform for the sale of assets.
Ritchie Bros also announced a deal to partner with Caterpillar for live onsite and online auctions of Caterpillar's used equipment. The deal will replace and expand on existing agreements between Caterpillar, its dealers and Ironplanet.
The partnership will be effective upon the closing of the IronPlanet acquisition, which is expected by the first half of 2017.
Goldman, Sachs & Co. is serving as financial adviser to Ritchie, while Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP and Dechert LLP are serving as its legal advisers. J.P. Morgan Securities LLC is serving as financial adviser to IronPlanet and Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP is serving as its legal adviser.
(Reporting by Vishaka George in Bengaluru; Editing by Leslie Adler)