Center Parcs appoints bankers to work on a £2.5bn flotation plan
The company, owned by the private equity giant Blackstone, owns five forest retreats in the UK where holidaymakers take part in activities ranging from horse riding to spa days. It was originally listed on London’s junior AIM market in 2003, before being taken private three years later.
According to reports, Blackstone has now appointed Bank of America Merrill Lynch and Morgan Stanley to act as global co-ordinators on a possible listing, having rejected a joint £2bn takeover bid from BC Partners and the Canada Pension Plan last year.
Barclays and Deutsche Bank are also believed to have been chosen to work on a twin track process, which means it could also be sold to another private equity firm or sovereign wealth fund.
Another company also looking at a stock market float is challenger bank Aldermore, which was was forced to pull its planned listing last October because of volatile markets.
“It was always our intention to come back to market,” the chief executive, Phillip Monks, said yesterday.
But he would not comment on whether he would try to squeeze the flotation in before the general election. “I can’t comment on timing but we have produced a stonking set of results today,” the Aldermore boss added.
Mr Monks also said that he had “never spoken” to TSB, which was reported to have looked at but walked away from a £600m takeover bid.
He said: “Our owners [the US private equity firm AnaCap] are not trying to find a trade sale.”
Analysts expect Aldermore to be brought to market with a valuation of £600m to £650m, down from the maximum £880m it looked for last year.