Gas Natural, the Ohio-based company mired in scandal, was recently talking to prospective buyers about a sale, but talks came to a screeching halt when former CEO Richard Osborne filed a lawsuit against the company. The scandal started back in November when Ohio regulators ordered an investigation into Gas Natural. In May, the company announced that Osborne would be retiring and his son would take the reins. Late last month, Osborne Senior struck back, filing a lawsuit against the company. The suit has forced Gas Natural to put the sale on the back burner, but sources say that as soon as the matter is settled, the company will once again be on the prowl for a buyer. Even with the controversy surrounding the company, there will be no shortage of buyers as there is an intense level of interest in the gas local distribution space. Similar companies that have recently traded hands have fetched rich ebitda multiples of 10.5 times. With about $20 million in ebitda last year, Gas Natural could easily fetch north of $200 million in a sale.
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