Buyout group Triton has emerged as the leading bidder for reusable plastic container firm IFCO Systems put on the block by Australian pallets and container firm Brambles, people close to the matter say.

Triton trumped bids from EQT, Pamplona, PAI and Brookfield, which had also vied for the company offering boxes used to transport fruit, vegetables, meat and bread, they said on Sunday.

Brambles was not immediately available for comment. Triton declined to comment.

A price could not immediately be verified, final offers due last Monday had been expected to value IFCO at 2.3- 2.4 billion euros (about $A3.8 billion) including debt, the people said.

They added that the deal had not yet been finalised and could still fall apart.

IFCO generated 2018 sales of $1.1 billion and an underlying profit of $136 million, according to Bramble’s fiscal 2018 annual report.

Brambles purchased then Germany-listed IFCO in 2010 for about $1.3 billion, but Brambles announced the demerger last August to focus on other business lines.