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Auction Technology Group next off London’s IPO rank

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Auction Technology Group (ATG) has said it will raise £250mln next month when it lists in London with a value of around £600mln.

Acquired last year by US private equity TA Associates, business has boomed as Brits have been stuck indoors during lockdown.

The company runs the eponymous Auction Trade Gazette and websites such as the BBC’s Bargain Hunt and thesalesroom.com as well as an online auction platform.

In a statement today, ATG said it had already received commitments for £100mln from three cornerstone investors: Jupiter Asset Management, Caledonia, and Capital World Investors.

Money raised during the IPO will pay off £130mln of preference shares with a further £120 earmarked for float costs and debt reduction.

Chief executive John-Paul Savant said: The opportunities for ATG in the years ahead are considerable. The industry’s structural shift from offline to online is still in its early stages. We also play a key role in the growing circular economy, facilitating the buying and selling of millions of second-hand items and promoting a less wasteful world.

“Now is the right time for us to go public. We have multiple levers for growth, centered on achieving maximum asset sale values for auctioneers and delivering the best online curated auction experience for bidders. We look forward to welcoming our new investors and beginning the next stage of our journey.”

Admission will likely take place in March 2021, said ATG, with the price set by a bookbuild exercise.

London has already hosted several successful IPOs in 2021, with online card retailer Moonpig and iconic footwear group maker Dr Martens  both achieving hefty premiums to the sale price when trading got underway.

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