Sparkling plan: Private equity owner of jewellery company Aurum considering stock market float as well as sale

 
William Turvill
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A woman arranges gold jewellery on displ
Apollo acquired Aurum Holdings for a reported £180m in 2012 (Source: Getty)

The London Stock Exchange could be be set for another jewel in its crown.

The private equity owner of high-class jeweller Aurum Holdings, which is behind high street chain Goldsmiths, is considering options for floating the company.

Apollo Global Management, which acquired the firm for a reported £180m in 2012, has appointed Jefferies bankers to explore a sale. And City A.M. has learned Aurum could also be in line for an initial public offering (IPO).

Read more: Watch this space: UK jewellery chains put up for sale

Aurum has more than 2,000 staff across the UK and around 140 stores.

In the year to April 2015, the company reported revenues of £415m, up around 20 per cent on the previous year.

Aurum is also understood to have benefited from the Brexit vote and the falling value of the pound, with more tourists flocking to the UK and shopping in its stores.

Aurum chief executive Brian Duffy confirmed Apollo is taking a twin-track approach to offloading the company, considering both private and public exits.

Read more: Jeweller Tiffany & Co polishes up a surprise rise in profit as sales slide

“[We have] an open mind to what would be the best way for this business to move,” Duffy told City A.M. “We’ve been owned by Apollo now for over four years, they’ve been great as a supportive shareholder. We’ve been a good investment for them, given them good returns on investment they’ve made and it’s all worked very well.

“Inevitably, a private equity group, after four years of good performance, they would look to assess what the value was, what the market appetite would be. And they are taking advice on what interest there would be from public investor groups versus privates.”

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