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Hollywood Bowl IPO plans revived after referendum

Hollywood Bowl, the UK’s largest ten-pin bowling operator, has revived plans for a £280-million initial public offering (IPO), The Sunday Times has reported. While the company said in June that it was planning to float on the London Stock Exchange in July, the group’s majority owner, private equity firm Electra, pulled back as the EU referendum approached.

The Sunday Times reported yesterday that Hollywood Bowl had revived plans for a London float, which could value the company at £280 million, with the company’s private equity owner Electra instructing investment bank Investec to run the float. The Hollywood Bowl IPO could see shares begin trading by the end of next month.
Electra, which holds 85 percent in the ten-pin bowling operator, had attempted a listing earlier this year, only to pull back as the EU vote approached. City sources, however, told the newspaper that the float had been resurrected in recent weeks after potential investors said they were still willing to take part in the process. The group’s private equity owner is understood to be selling its entire stake.
Hollywood Bowl operates 54 bowling centres in the UK under the ‘Hollywood Bowl’, ‘AMF’ and ‘Bowlplex’ brands, and accounts for about a third of the UK ten-pin bowling market. It was created in 2010 when pubs company Mitchells & Butlers sold its bowling business.
News that the Hollywood Bowl IPO might be back on track comes after reports suggested earlier this month that software giant Misys had appointed advisers for a £5.5-billion float before the American presidential election in November. The Misys IPO could be the biggest London float this year which has been marked by a slowdown in listings amid uncertainty ahead of the EU referendum, and market turbulence in the wake of the result.

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