New Look eyes March flotation

HIGH street retailer New Look could announce plans to raise up to £2bn through a flotation on the stock exchange as early as this week.

The board met to discuss an IPO or a sale last week to provide an exit for private equity groups Permira and Apax Partners. The duo, along with founder Tom Singh, took the business private for £800m in 2004.

The move comes despite doubts New Look would raise its target price with an IPO. Lazard, the firm’s adviser, is likely to consider a sale until the last minute given the recent flush of buyout activity.