Ardagh fires starting gun on potential $373m stock market listing

Ardagh Group has fired the formal starting gun on an up to $373m (€352m) stock market listing in New York.

In a statement last night, the Irish-founded global packaging giant said it had begun its initial public offering (IPO) in New York.

Papers filed with the New York Stock Exchange show the glass and metal container giant intends to sell 16.2 million shares in a price range of between $17 and $20 per share.

Including a so-called “greenshoe” of 2.48 million additional shares that may be exercised by the deal underwriters, it would take the total raised to as much as $373.6m, if the deal priced at the top of the indicated range.

At the mid-price range, the proceeds of the IPO will amount to around $350m, well ahead of the $300m previously indicated.

Ardagh founder and chairman Paul Coulson had said he planned to raise around $300m by selling 5pc of shares in the company in what is a small equity raise relative to the size of the business. Proceeds will go to reduce Ardagh’s group debt, which stands at €7.2m.

Ardagh Group had sales of €7.7bn last year, according to results filed last month.

Although small relative to the scale of the business, the stock market float is likely to be increased in future and will give Ardagh an option of raising capital in the equity markets rather than from bondholders in the future.

Citigroup, Deutsche Bank, Goldman Sachs, Barclays, Credit Suisse and JP Morgan are acting as joint book-running managers for the offering.

With the bulk of papers filed ahead of the market debut, a formal investor roadshow is expected to kick off, clearing the way for the deal to price in the market within weeks.

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