LeasePlan will push ahead with an initial public offering (IPO) on the continental Euronext exchange, six months after its chief executive said the company was taking its time to build the strongest investor pitch possible.
The Dutch lessor said it plans a stock exchange float in Amsterdam and Brussels “in coming weeks”. In a statement, it urged investors to “disregard” Dutch media reports from April, in which chief executive Tex Gunning said the company was seeking an IPO valuation close to ALD Automotive’s €5.6bn (£4.9bn).
55-year-old LeasePlan last switched hands in 2016, when a private equity consortium bought it from the Volkswagen group and German investors for €3.7bn. The company was originally targeting June of this year for the long-rumoured public offering, but in April, Gunning said the company would delay the float in order to build a better case for investors.
Shares in Singapore-based holding company Lincoln Financing will now be marketed to Dutch and Belgian retail investors in the IPO, along with select institutional investors through private placements. The company is aiming for an underlying profit of €750-800m, 60% of which are intended to be paid as dividends.
In the “medium-term” – which it did not define – it expected a pre-tax profit uplift of €370m from restructuring plans, along another €90m bump from CarNext, its retail leasing and subscription platform. The company also cited a spread-out €80m negative impact from a “diesel contingency”, along with a €100m reduction in profits from vehicle disposal compared to 2017.
LeasePlan has made fleet leasing and retail car subscription the two spearheads of its revenue expansion. Its business strategy remains very car-centric, whereas rivals Alphabet and ALD have been increasingly piloting “asset-light” products built around alternative and shared mobility.
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“LeasePlan is in an excellent position across our two market [segments],” said Gunning. “I … believe that becoming a public company is the logical next step in our company’s development and will give us the exposure and capital flexibility to further support our strategy.”