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Apax planning Travelex exit through London stock flotation

14 Oct 2013

dollar envelope moneyEuropean private equity firm Apax Partners is reportedly preparing to exit foreign exchange business Travelex through a listing on the London Stock Exchange.

The firm bought into Travelex for just over £1bn in 2005, and is eyeing a similar valuation for the IPO according to UK newspaper The Independent, which cited a source close to the pair.

That initial purchase price also included Travelex’s global payments division, which was bought by Western Union for £606m in 2011 to help Travelex pay down spiralling debt.

Fellow European buyout house 3i held a seven per cent stake following Apax’s investment having been a backer of the business since 1999, while Travelex founder Lloyd Dorfman kept a 30 per cent stake.

The Independent source said Travelex had to consider its options while the public markets were “very strong”, although said the flotation was not expected before 2014 as there was a lot of preparatory work to do and “a bit of queue”.

It also cited a banking source as saying he was waiting to be called to a beauty parade to decide who the advisers will be for the IPO.

He said, “This is the first real feeling for four or five years that there is a real queue of companies of good reputation and, crucially, good name recognition.”

Travelex has more than 1,300 stores and 1,100 cash machines worldwide.

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