FRANKFURT, Feb 11 (Reuters) - German lighting group Osram has received approval from a U.S. agency for the 400 million euro ($425.52 million) sale of its LEDvance lamps unit to a consortium of Chinese bidders, a spokesman said, bringing the deal closer to completion.
The Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS), a government panel that scrutinizes transactions over possible security concerns, gave its backing for the deal late on Friday, the spokesman said on Saturday.
A U.S. approval was needed as parts of the business of LEDvance, Osram's largest unit, are based in the United States, a company spokesman said.
The approval from CFIUS comes days after the U.S. agency told German chipmaker Infineon Technologies and U.S. LED lighting maker Cree Inc that Cree's $850 million sale of its Wolfspeed Power unit to Infineon might not go ahead because of security concerns.
Osram agreed last July to sell the renamed LEDvance unit with 2 billion euros in sales and about 9,000 staff, to IDG Capital Partners, Chinese lighting company MLS Co and financial investor Yiwu State-Owned Assets Operation Center.
The Munich-based firm, listed on Germany's mid-cap index MDAX, is still awaiting approval from the Chinese State Administration for Foreign Exchange (SAFE), the last authority to back the deal. It expects closing of the transaction in fiscal 2017, the spokesman said.
$1 = 0.9400 euros Reporting by Georgina Prodhan; Writing by Andreas Cremer; Editing by Clelia Oziel