LeasePlan’s chief executive Tex Gunning has said the company will postpone its initial public offering (IPO) until after the summer.
Speaking to Dutch daily Het Financieele Dagblad (FD), Gunning said the company, which originally planned a June 2018 flotation, needed more time to present prospective shareholders with a convincing case for investment.
“I said that we could go to the exchange before the summer, but that is not going to happen,” Gunning said. “We aim for after the summer, when we will be more ready to present our strategy. But ultimately, our shareholders will decide on the timing.”
He denied fluctuations in the stock market were the primary reason for pushing back the float. He also dismissed rumours that LeasePlan needed more time to obtain an IPO authorisation from the Dutch central bank.
‘The discussions with the regulator are going well,” he said. “They prefer to see a diversified shareholder base at Leaseplan, instead of one concentrated pool of owners.
He added: “There is no discussion about the level of our debts or other financial parameters. After the summer we will simply be further ahead with our strategic plan.”
Gunning said the company would be seeking a premium compared to the €5.6bn (£4.8bn) valuation of its nearest competitor, Societe Generale’s partially-listed ALD Automotive.
He cited LeasePlan’s large business customer base as a point of strength over ALD’s mostly individual-focused portfolio.
He also said the company would redistribute at least 60% of profits as dividends, afforded thanks to its independence from a parent banking group, and seek earnings per share growth of 10% to 12%, twice ALD’s rate.
Rumours of a LeasePlan float emerged in early 2017, and plans were confirmed by the company later in the year.
Since 2016, the Dutch company has been owned by a consortium of investors, who bought it for €3.7bn from Global Mobility Holdings, a joint venture between Volkswagen and Saudi investors.