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CORRECTED-Alfa Financial Software plans to list in London next month
May 8, 2017 / 10:11 AM / 7 months ago

CORRECTED-Alfa Financial Software plans to list in London next month

(Corrects in para 4 to refer to IPOs by UK firms, not London IPOs)

By Esha Vaish

May 8 (Reuters) - Alfa Financial, which provides software for the asset finance industry, said it plans to list on the London stock exchange next month.

The company, which counts Bank of America and Barclays as customers, would be aiming for a valuation of over 800 million pounds ($1 billion) after the initial public offering (IPO), a person familiar with the matter said.

London-based Alfa said in a statement that it hopes the listing will help it grab a larger chunk of the asset finance market by attracting new customers looking to replace legacy or in-house systems that have failed to keep up with evolving regulations.

Uncertainty around Britain’s future outside of the EU single market has dampened sentiment: funds raised by British firms doing initial public offerings fell 28 percent in the first quarter from a year ago, according to Thomson Reuters data.

Alfa, however, said Brexit uncertainty had not affected its listing plans as the underlying asset finance market continued to grow strongly.

“The asset finance market is an incredibly robust mart and has shown growth through all sorts of political and economic turbulence. So whatever is going on ... we’re very confident in our constituent market,” Chief Executive Andrew Denton told Reuters in a phone interview.

“(The listing) will be good for us to be more widely known. We believe that will greatly increase our market breakup.”

The asset finance market globally was estimated to be worth about $5.4 trillion by 2015, with $2.6 trillion of this relating to new business volumes, according to PwC.

Alfa said that it expected to float at least 25 percent of its shares, including the sale of shares by investor CHP Software and Consulting Ltd, which is 89.7 percent owned by Executive Chairman Andrew Page and 10.3 percent by Denton.

Alfa’s business is split between the United States and Europe and funds from its highly cash-generative business would cover potential growth plans, which include growing its newly launched cloud-based service and rolling out upgrades for its existing platform.

“The key thing for us is to be on the market for all of the good things that brings us, rather than raising money,” Denton said.

Barclays and Numis are acting as joint bookrunners for the IPO, while Rothschild is acting as financial adviser. ($1 = 0.7714 pounds) (Reporting by Esha Vaish in Bengaluru; Editing by Susan Fenton)

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