SYDNEY, Oct 9 Australian defence and technology systems group Tenix will seek expressions

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SYDNEY, Oct 9 (Reuters) Australian defence and technology systems group Tenix will seek expressions of interest from up to 40 potential bidders in a proposed A$1 billion ($893 million) auction of the private company, sources familiar with the matter said Tuesday.

Australian construction firm Leighton Holdings Ltd and engineering firm United Group Ltd were among possible suitors who planned to take a look at the Tenix assets, other sources said, confirming local media reports.

Tenix said this week it had appointed UBS to advise on a sale and interested parties would be notified. Owners, the Salteri family, decided to consider an auction following a strategic review of the business.

''Considerable interest has been shown by multiple parties in participating in the growth of Tenix's defence and infrastructure businesses and it is expected this interest will result in a positive outcome,'' Tenix Chief Executive Greg Hayes said in a statement.

Britain's BAE Systems , U.S. groups Raytheon and General Dynamics Corp , and Australia's Macquarie Bank Ltd and Babcock&Brown were also potential bidders, one source told Reuters.

Tenix would consider offers for the entire group or parts of the company which has interests in defence, infrastructure services, and traffic management.

''All options are on the table,'' the source said, saying Tenix' owners expected the sale price to be around A$1 billion.

It was still early days and an information memorandum had not been sent to potential bidders yet, a second source added.

Leighton and United declined to comment.

REUTERS SR GC1203

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