Winterhill set to raise £6m in Aim float

INSOLVENCY services specialist Winterhill will today announce its intention to raise £6m through an initial public offering (IPO) on London’s Aim market, as it seeks to capitalise on the spate of corporate bankruptcies coming out of the recession.

Directors Andrew and Neil Duckworth, who founded asset valuation and disposal firm Winterhill Asset in 1998, intend to use £3.5m of the monies raised to acquire corporate debt recovery business Largo, renaming the combined entity Winterhill Group.

Neil Duckworth, who becomes chief executive of the group, said: “We are very busy at the moment – the firm does well in a counter-cyclical environment, when we tend to see a boom in corporate restructurings and insolvencies coming out of recession.”

He added that the acquisition of Largo will provide a platform for the business to expand into non-insolvency based services such as asset appraisal and recovery.

Winterhill has also hired Countrywide chairman Harry Hill as its new non-executive chairman and Paul Hancock – a veteran of JP Morgan and Bank of America – as a non-executive director.

BROKER Daniel Stewart is acting as nominated adviser and broker to Winterhill on its upcoming placing.

Leading the team on the float is Simon Leathers, a director in corporate finance at the firm for several years. He will be backed up by relative newcomer Emma Earl, who joined the broker recently as a manager in corporate finance.

Landing the deal will come as a welcome piece of good news for Daniel Stewart, which has struggled over the course of the recession due to the near-dearth of corporate finance activity in the small cap sector. In September, the firm reported a 27 per cent drop in full year revenues to £1.9m, though chief executive Peter Shea said the group had noticed an uplift in underlying activity in all business areas in the second half as market conditions begin to improve.