Virgin Mobile float is go

Bankers appointed, date pencilled

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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