DAC Beachcroft Advises On First IPO Under New ISDX Rules
Published On: 17 March 2014
International law firm DAC Beachcroft has advised newly-formed Capital for Colleagues plc on its IPO and admission to the ICAP Securities & Derivatives Exchange (ISDX) growth market today (17 March).
The company, an investment vehicle focussed on opportunities in the Employee-Owned Business (EOB) sector, was expected to have a market capitalisation of £3.25m upon admission.
The deal marks the first admission under the new ISDX rules, which came into force in July 2013. It also sees Capital for Colleagues become one of the first companies to register as a Small Registered UK Alternative Investment Fund Manager, a new category of regulated entity introduced in the wake of the Alternative Investment Fund Managers Directive in 2013.
DAC Beachcroft secured the instruction to advise Capital for Colleagues, its first completed IPO of 2014, on the back of its established equity capital market (ECM) credentials, which include headline roles for the London Corporate team on a trio of AIM IPOs last year.
The firm's team was led by London Corporate partner Nick Gibbon and also included associate Michelle Jones and solicitors Agnes Macduff and Lucy Tyrrell. Regulatory advice was provided by partner James MacNish Porter.
Commenting on the deal, Nick Gibbon said: "We were delighted to act on this very exciting IPO. Proper recognition of the importance of the EOB sector in the UK has risen dramatically in recent years and the timing of this IPO couldn't be better, particularly given Capital for Colleagues' highly impressive board. The company offers investors a unique opportunity to gain exposure to the sector."
According to recent data released by the Employee Ownership Association, the EOB sector has outstripped more traditionally structured firms during the recession. The sector posted a growth rate more than 50% higher than the overall UK economy during 2012 and, in 2013, companies in the Employee Ownership Index outperformed FTSE All Share companies by more than 30%.
John Eckersley, Chief Executive at Capital for Colleagues, said: "Like any company seeking a public listing, this was not a run of the mill exercise for the management team so having the right legal team on board was crucial. Nick and his colleagues steered us skilfully through what turned out to be an exercise requiring not only detailed knowledge of what was technically possible but also a recognition of the practicalities of ensuring that the process remained on track. I can honestly say that I don't think we'd be at listing stage today without them."
Corporate advisers on the deal were Peterhouse Corporate Finance.