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Virgin Mobile float is go

Bankers appointed, date pencilled

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Virgin Mobile is lining up advisers to help it make an Initial Public Offering (IPO) later this summer.

So far three banks have been chosen: Investec, JP Morgan and Morgan Stanley, and a fourth adviser will be appointed shortly before the flotation, according to Reuters. 28 June is the rumoured date for the stock market sale.

The sell-off could raise more than £1.3bn. Branson is believed to be using the money to fund expansion of his US airline.

But the company is not putting all its eggs in one basket - it is has bankers looking at debt restructuring plans if for any reason the flotation is impossible.

Virgin execs are believed to be meeting in the next few weeks to make a final decision.

The market for telco IPOs seems to be improving - both Belgacom and Eircom have made the jump this year.

Virgin operates as a virtual network - T Mobile provides all the network and technology in the UK. In the US it works with Sprint. It has 1.75m subscribers in the US and 3.2m worldwide.

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