Hampson looks to raise £60m

Aerospace and automotive manufacturing group Hampson Industries yesterday announced a proposal to raise £59.5m via a share placing and open offer to reduce net debt and revamp the group’s financial structure.

Over 119m new ordinary shares will be on the table at a share price of 50p which represents a 22.8 per cent discount to the current market price.

Investment bank Lazard is advising the firm, while Investec and Lloyds TSB are underwriting the share issue. Investec is also brokering the fundraising.

“With a stronger financial platform, the directors believe that the group will be well-positioned to benefit from the anticipated recovery in aerospace tooling demand,” said Christopher Geoghegan, the group’s non-executive chairman.

The company’s 12-month tooling order book on 31 December had increased by 13 per cent in nine months. It has a net debt of £146.3m.

“The early signs of improving market demand, while encouraging for 2010, do not imply an imminent rise in the final quarter, which occurred last year”, warns Michael Blogg, analyst at Arbuthnot. “But Hampson is still well placed in the industry to gain from the development of major new composite-rich aircraft as the Boeing 787, Airbus A350, Bombardier C Series, F-35 Joint Strike Fighter, Hondajet and LearJet 85”, he added.