(Adds detail and background)
By Maya Nikolaeva
PARIS, March 3 ALD Automotive, the car leasing
arm of French bank Societe Generale, reported on
Friday a 21 percent rise in its net profits last year, as it
prepares for a market flotation which could value it at more
than 6 billion euros ($6.3 billion).
SocGen plans to sell shares in ALD in an initial public
offering (IPO) towards the middle of this year, while retaining
a majority holding in the company, which manages a worldwide
fleet of 1.4 million vehicles.
Two financial market sources said ALD could be valued at
more than 6 billion euros, while one said SocGen was willing to
sell a 20-30 percent stake.
In what could be a similar, benchmark deal, Volkswagen
and Dutch firm Fleet Investments BV sold fleet
management company LeasePlan Corporation to private investors
for 3.7 billion euros in 2016, a multiple of nine times its 2015
underlying net profit. reut.rs/2mlgndH
ALD made a net attributable profit of 511.7 million euros in
SocGen, which bought Deutsche Bank's European vehicle
leasing operations back in 2001, has said the aim of the IPO is
to provide ALD with the means to achieve its growth targets so
that it becomes a global leader in the sector.
Along with European rivals ALD faces some uncertainties over
fleet values, as tighter emissions regulations and some bans on
diesel cars could in turn lead to losses for companies with
large diesel fleets, as the vehicles are written down to reflect
falling re-sale values.
However, the company said last year that it had assessed all
potential impacts of the matter within its sales and pricing
ALD expects services and financial margins to grow annually
at approximately 8 to 10 percent, it said on Friday. It also
aims for a dividend payout ratio of 30-40 percent of net
The company says it holds the top spot in Europe and is
among the top three in the world in the full-service leasing and
fleet management market.
It has recently opened new subsidiaries, such as one in
Peru, and made acquisitions, such as that of French company
Parcours, which has fleets in Spain, Portugal, Belgium and
Around 70 percent of its profits before tax came from
operations in western Europe in 2015, while emerging countries
accounted for about 8 percent.
($1 = 0.9508 euros)
(Reporting by Maya Nikolaeva; Editing by Sudip Kar-Gupta, Greg