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Midwich IPO will value its AV and print distie biz at £165m

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Stock market. Pic: Alberto Carrasco Casado

The sleepy East Anglian market town of Diss is perhaps best known as the possible birthplace of former poet laureate John Skelton – but, perhaps, Midwich will finally overshadow the one-time Poet Laureate.

Midwich, the region’s finest tech distributor – for AV (audio-visual) and document services to be specific – is to sling its shares onto the Alternative Investment Market at the end of this week giving the company an anticipated market capitalisation of £165.3m.

The firm today placed 36.1 million new and existing ordinary shares at 208 pence each on the London exchange. A total of 79.4 million units will be admitted, though roughly 55 per cent of securities will not be in public hands by the 6 May admission date.

The early placing is expected to generate £75.2m of gross proceeds, of which £49.2m will be given to selling shareholders, while the remainder will be used to pay down debt and fund the buy of German AV distie Kern & Stelly.

Stephen Fenby, managing director at Midwich, who bought into the distributor in 2010 when long-term investor Nick Culley sold his stake, stands to make millions of pounds.

Prior the admission on AIM, he (and connected persons) owned 59.2 per cent of its shares, while the rest was split between the directors.

After the event, Fenby will own 27.9 per cent, Schroders some ten per cent, Hargreaves Hale 7.3 per cent and the rest will be split split between directors and institutional investor Standard Life.

The distributor has operations in Australasia, Germany, France and Ireland.

In the year ended 31 December 2015, Midwich turned over £314.28m in sales, up from £280.7m in the prior calendar year, and reported adjusted profit after tax of £11.72m, up from £9.7m. ®

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