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UK P2P lender Funding Circle plans to press ahead with London IPO

Funding Circle Holdings Ltd. announced its intention to float on the London Stock Exchange's main market.

The peer-to-peer lender aims to generate gross proceeds of approximately £300 million by issuing new shares, while existing shareholders, directors and employees will also sell existing stock as part of the offer.

Heartland A/S, through wholly owned indirect subsidiary Aktieselskabet, has already agreed to purchase 10% of Funding Circle's issued ordinary share capital, subject to certain conditions. Heartland is the private holding company of Danish billionaire Anders Holch Povlsen, a major investor in online retailers Zalando and Asos, CNBC reported.

Immediately following admission, Funding Circle intends to have a free float of at least 25% of its issued share capital. An overallotment option of 10% of the total offer size will be made available by some of the company's existing shareholders, it noted.

Merrill Lynch International, Goldman Sachs International and Morgan Stanley & Co. International PLC would serve as joint global coordinators and joint book runners in the event the IPO proceeds. Numis Securities Ltd. would also serve as joint book runner.

Funding Circle said it plans to use the primary proceeds of the offer to improve its balance sheet, in order to support growth over profitability and allow it to take advantage of opportunities in new and existing markets.

The company reported a loss of £27.0 million for the six months ended June 30, widening from the year-ago loss of £19.2 million. Revenues for the period reached £63.0 million, up from £40.9 million a year earlier, while operating expenses rose on a yearly basis to £90.3 million from £60.3 million.