Buyout groups make flurry of approaches to London-listed companies in bet on recovery from pandemic

Private equity groups are stepping up their pursuit of British companies, capitalising on a UK stock market that has fallen even though resurgent US equities have set record highs.

Pub chain Marston’s, private jet services group Signature Aviation and power supplier Aggreko are among the London-listed companies targeted by buyout firms this year.

If a lacklustre UK stock market makes for an attractive hunting ground, buyout groups are also under pressure to deploy record-sized funds, especially after some slowed pace of acquisitions early in the Covid-19 crisis. The industry has about $2.5tn in so-called dry powder waiting to be spent.

Aggreko said this month that it was in talks with TDR Capital and Miami-based I Squared Capital over a potential £2bn takeover. Other London-listed groups that have either been approached by, or agreed to be sold to, private equity firms this year include the investment platform Nucleus, the debt collector Arrow Global and the financial planner AFH.

Read more at: Financial Times

By Kaye Wiggins

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