Dubai World‘s investment arm Istithmar is planning to sell its port and shipping agent Inchcape Shipping Services (ISS) for up to $700m.

The company said it is likely to appoint Bank of America Merrill Lynch and Royal Bank of Scotland to manage the sale, according to sources close to the deal, reports Reuters.

Advent International, Cinven, Montagu Private Equity, and TPG Capital are among the buyout firms working on bids.

As part of a restructuring plan, Dubai World seeks to offload assets which in November had asked for a delay on paying $26bn in debt linked to its main property units.

In 2006, Istithmar bought London-based Inchcape for $285m from London-based private equity fund Electra Investment Trust.