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Folkestone-based Saga shares floated on London Stock Exchange at 185p per share - the bottom end of valuation which could have been 245p

By Chris Price

Shares in over-50s holiday and insurance company Saga floated for the first time on the London Stock Exchange today at the bottom end of their initial valuation.

The Folkestone-based firm announced an initial valuation of 185p per share, having said earlier this month they could be valued at as much as 245p.

Owner Acromas was expected to sell a proportion of its 72% shareholding but the company has only opted to sell about £550m of new shares.

Saga has made around 100 of its employees redundant
Saga has made around 100 of its employees redundant

That valued the firm at £2.1bn at the beginning of conditional dealings today, which is done to allow banks and brokerages to trade shares between themselves to stabilise the initial public offering’s price.

Unconditional trade to any interested shareholders starts next week on Thursday, May 29.

Acromas is owned by private equity groups Permira, Charterhouse and CVC.

Executive chairman Andrew Goodsell said: “We have been very pleased with the level of demand for Saga shares from both retail and institutional investors, with the offer subscribed several times over.

“We are delighted to have so many of our customers as shareholders and to have a high quality group of core institutions who we believe will be long-term supporters of the business.”

Saga is based in Folkestone
Saga is based in Folkestone

Saga Group chief executive Lance Batchelor said: “As a public company, owned in part by our customers, Saga will be even better positioned to continue helping the over 50s live life to the full.

“Our travel, insurance, financial service and healthcare products are world class and we are now actively looking at new opportunities such as wealth management and private pay care in the home.”

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