AJ Bell shares soar 33% on debut

AJ Bell shares soar 33% on debut

AJ Bell began trading on Friday, with shares surging over 30% to 213p.

The investment firm’s price was set at 160p this morning, valuing the group at around £651 million. 

AJ Bell floated 108,264,032 ordinary shares – 26.6% of its issued share capital.

“The IPO is a significant milestone for the business and I see it as firing the starting gun on our next phase of growth, which I’m massively excited about leading the business through,” said founder and boss Andy Bell.

“The demand for our IPO from both blue-chip institutions and our own customers was a real endorsement of our business and the market opportunities that lie ahead of us, and I’m pleased to welcome our new shareholders on board.”

The company reported revenues of £89.7 million, up 19% last year. Pre-tax profit was up 31% to £28.4 million.

London has had several disappointing London listings this year including Aston Martin and Funding Circle amid market volatility and Brexit fears.

A banker who did not want to be named said of the Aston Martin and Funding Circle debuts: “This is brutal. The IPO market stinks for growth stocks which do not have an earnings track record.”

Shares in AJ Bell (LON: AJB) are currently trading +33.63% at 216p (1049GMT).