// The Very Group could be heading for a £3bn+ stock market float
// An IPO of The Very Group would make it the first time a Barclay-owned business goes public
// The Very Group operates online retailers Very and Littlewoods
The billionaire family behind the parent company of online retailers Very and Littlewoods is reportedly mulling the possibility of a stock market flotation.
According to Sky News, the Barclay family are in the early stages of exploring plans for a £3 billion-plus initial public offering (IPO) for The Very Group.
A decision on or full details of the IPO is not expected any time soon though, especially in the wake of the unexpected death last week of Sir David Barclay, co-owner of the business alongside his twin brother Sir Frederick Barclay.
It is also not yet clear if The Very Group’s board has formally appointed bankers to help advise on a potential IPO plan.
It comes after the retailer last week reported a record-breaking Christmas and Black Friday trading season, bolstered by a 50 per cent year-on-year surge in website visitors.
Should an IPO go ahead, The Very Group would join a list of retailers heading for the stock market in the wake of the pandemic.
The Hut Group made a £1.9 billion flotation in September, while Moonpig and Dr Martens both confirmed plans for an IPO just this month.
A stock market listing of The Very Group would also make it the first time a Barclay-owned business goes public.
Last year, the billionaire brothers sold off London’s Ritz hotel, and the family continues to own The Telegraph newspaper and logistics business Yodel.
This would not be the first time The Very Group has explored going public.
In 2017, when the firm was then known as Shop Direct, it held talks with private equity firms as it sought the possibility of opening up to external investors. However, it never went ahead.
At the time, an estimated £3 billion valuation was sought.
A Very Group has not yet provided a comment on the latest IPO news.