Aston Martin shareholders approve £4bn float

Aston Martin shareholders approve £4bn float

The luxury car-maker has reportedly signed up seven banks to prepare its £4bn stock market flotation in a move that would be the City's most anticipated for years.

The banks that have been approved by shareholders are Bank of America Merrill Lynch, Credit Suisse, HSBC, and Unicredit who will underwrite the deal.

The four banks will work with Deutsche Bank, Goldman Sachs and JPMorgan, who will act as joint global co-ordinators on the initial public offering (IPO).

The recruitment of these banks, a move which has been approved by the firm’s two Italian and Kuwaiti shareholders, is the latest sign of a push towards going public.

In February, the Gaydon-headquartered manufacturer said it was looking at a “range of strategic options, including the potential for an IPO”.

The company will reportedly look for a valuation of between £4bn and £5bn.

While a London exchange is the likeliest listing venue for the IPO, the firm’s board and shareholders have also considered New York as they seek a valuation similar to that of Ferrari when it was listed in the US.

An independent chairman will also be appointed in preparation for the flotation.

Aston Martin recently unveiled plans to revive its Lagonda brand as an all-electric vehicle in a move that Andy Palmer, the company's chief executive, said would “appeal to people other than traditionalists, such as those who want to upgrade from a Tesla”.

In an effort to embrace growing demand for electric vehicles, Aston Martin has said that each of its models will be developed with hybrid technology or full battery power by 2025.

The company recently reported the highest sales in its history last year, at £876m, with pre-tax profits of £87m.

Aston Martin employs more than 2,700 people and sells its cars in 53 countries.

Its growth prospects have been spurred by its strong performance in overseas markets including China, where it plans to open 10 new showrooms.

The carmaker announced the expansion during Theresa May's recent trade visit to China, where she was joined by bosses including Mr Palmer.