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Business & Economy

North Shields’ Kitwave Group reveals £105 million AIM trading plans

An independent wholesaler has revealed a stock market move worth more than £100 million.

Kitwave Group plans to place in excess of 54 million shares on the AIM exchange.

Bosses at the business, based in North Shields, say they expect the endeavour to raise £64 million for the company and £17.6 million for selling shareholders.

They add it will value the business as £105 million, revealing the placing had “attracted strong support from high quality institutional investors and was significantly over-subscribed”.

The firm is expected to make an application for admission to the London Stock Exchange on May 24, with directors and senior management set to own 22.3 per cent of ordinary shares.

The market move comes after a prolonged period of growth for Kitwave, which has seen the business take on a number of market operators that include Alpine Fine Foods Limited, Central Supplies and Miller Food Service.

And chief executive Paul Young says it will only enhance the firm’s ability to continue growing in the future.

He said: “We are delighted with the strong support shown by our new investors.

“To date, we have executed a highly successful buy-and-build strategy, having acquired and integrated ten wholesale distributors into the group since 2011, and we are confident trading on AIM will enable us to continue to support this strategy.

“Furthermore, the directors believe admission will enhance the profile of the group and its brands, improve Kitwave’s position with key suppliers, strengthen the group’s balance sheet, and provide greater ability to incentivise and retain key employees going forward.

“We are confident admission to AIM will enable us to further improve our services to existing and prospective customers across the UK and globally.

“We look forward to an exciting future as a public company and generating shareholder value.”