esure to be valued at 1.15bn pounds in stock market debut

UK online insurance venture esure's initial public offering (IPO) in London later this month will be the biggest stock-market debut so far this year, valuing the company at around 1.15bn pounds.

UK online insurance venture esure's initial public offering (IPO) in London later this month will be the biggest stock-market debut so far this year, valuing the company at around 1.15bn pounds.

esure, the motor and home insurer founded by its Chairman and insurance tycoon Peter Wood, on Friday set an indicative price range for the IPO at 240-310p per share and said it plans to sell as much as 50% of its share capital on March 22nd.

The firm said in a press release that it is planning to raise around £50m in proceeds from the sale which will be used to repay its outstanding debt.

Its expected market capitalisation on its debut is around £1,149m, based on the mid-point of the indicator price range, meaning that the company will be eligible for inclusion in the second-tier FTSE 250 index.

The company, which had 1.25m in-force motor policies and 0.5m in-force home policies at the end of 2012, was made famous by the late director Michael Winner who appeared in its TV adverts with the catchphrase "Calm down dear!"

"We have worked hard for many years to make esure a business that can compete at the highest level with confidence. Today is a milestone reached through the enormous hard work by the esure board, executive team and staff," Wood said.

"We live and breathe insurance at esure and look forward to bringing that knowledge, commitment and focus to bear as a premium listed company."

esure also owns a 50% stake in the well-known insurance price comparison website Gocompare.com.

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