Allen & Overy (A&O) and Linklaters have landed roles advising online spread-betting company CMC Markets as it plans to float on the London Stock Exchange, in what will be the first initial public offering (IPO) of 2016.
The announcement follows weeks of speculation and the company, which has been valued at up to £1bn, is expected to raise gross primary proceeds of approximately £17m to meet admission and staff incentive plan costs.
The company was founded in 1989 by former Conservative Party co-treasurer Peter Cruddas, who will remain the majority shareholder, with Goldman Sachs holding a 10% stake after paying an estimated £100m in 2007.
Linklaters is providing English and US legal advisers to CMC and Cruddas, with corporate partner Iain Wagstaff on the UK side and capital markets partner Patrick Sheil acting on US aspects of the float.
A&O is advising underwriters Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley and Royal Bank of Canada, led by corporate partner David Broadley and US securities partner Adam Wells, with advice on regulatory matters being provided by partner Damian Carolan.
The group expects to launch the offering in early February.
CMC had previously considered an IPO in 2007 before the global financial crisis.
The float comes after A&O advised on a series of UK IPO’s including Worldpay’s £2.48bn listing last year.