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Steinway & Sons piano maker eyed for possible takeover by China's Poly Group / INDEPENDENT.IE

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Steinway Musical Instruments, the legendary piano maker controlled by US hedge fund billionaire John Paulson, has attracted takeover interest from China's Poly Group, people familiar with the matter said. The state-owned conglomerate is holding preliminary talks about a purchase of Steinway, according to one of the people, who asked not to be identified because the deliberations are private. The company, whose iconic pianos have been used by virtuosos such as Lang Lang, could fetch about $1bn (€862m) in a sale, the people said.

Steinway should be able to fetch a high valuation given that the company may reach 30pc to 40pc annual sales growth in China, according to Shaun Rein, founder and managing director of the China Market Research Group. "Steinway has massive potential in China as consumers love the brand," Mr Rein said. "As Chinese middle-class families get wealthier, they'll be willing to spend on a luxury piano for their kids as they see music as a key part of their education. And nobody beats Steinway on that."

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