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Report: Xerox Mulls Sale of Leasing Unit

The financing arm is being shed to woo more bidders for the company, Reuters said

Xerox is said to be considering selling the arm of its business that lends money to customers to rent printers and equipment, a move that would make itself more attractive to potential bidders, according to Reuters.

The news comes two months after Xerox backed out of a proposed merger with Fujifilm that would have seen ownership of the American copier icon move to Japan.

One partner reached for comment said he had not heard the news, but was confident that if such a deal happened it would work out for partners. On the channel side, Xerox Financial Services is used for 90 percent of transactions, while Xerox Capital Services is used on the direct side.

"We as most Xerox Channel Partners use Xerox Financial Services for our business to finance many of our clients multifunction printers orders and they are fantastic to work with," said Josh Justice, president of Just Tech in La Plata, Md. "We also work with GreatAmerica [Financial Services] and they have been great to work with as well. I think as a provider of office technology equipment it is good to have relationships with multiple leasing companies."

A spokesman for Xerox said the company was not commenting on the Reuter’s story. Xerox shares were trading higher on the news, up $0.17 to $25.33.

Reuters, citing sources, said divesting the leasing unit would relieve Xerox of $3.6 billion in debt. Reuters noted that Carl Icahn and Darwin Deason, who are two of the companys’ largest shareholders, are preparing to launch an auction for the company. That is based on a claim Deason made in a lawsuit againt the previous board of directors. That suit against Xerox has been dropped.

Xerox on Friday announced an earnings call would be held the morning of July 26, its first since the deal with Fujifilm fell through.

Fujifilm had sued Xerox for more than $1 billion in U.S. District Court in Manhattan for walking away from the sale. In its own filing, Xerox has asked for, and was granted more time to respond to Fuji's complaint.

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