April 25, 2019 / 2:25 PM / 3 months ago

Irish pharma group Uniphar eyes 2019 stock market listing - source

DUBLIN (Reuters) - Irish pharmaceuticals group Uniphar has hired stockbroker Davy and RBC Capital Markets to sound out investors for a possible initial public offering (IPO) in 2019, a source familiar with the matter said on Thursday.

The company could raise up to 150 million euros ($167 million) from the issue of new shares if market conditions allow, the source said.

The listing would be a welcome boost for Euronext Dublin, formerly known as the Irish Stock Exchange, which is yet to host an IPO in 2019 after a number of companies postponed floatations when markets faltered towards the end of 2018.

Uniphar has an annual turnover of around 1.3 billion euros and could use the fresh capital for acquisitions as it seeks to expand.

The source said comparable listed peers include Britain’s Clinigen and Ireland’s UGD Healthcare, both of which are listed in London.

“It is a stated objective of Uniphar plc to seek a potential IPO listing on the Dublin and London markets subject to favourable market conditions,” a spokesman for the company said.

“The company is continuing to monitor the markets with this objective in mind.”

Founded in 1967, Uniphar is the current leader in the Irish pharmaceutical wholesale and distribution market, having built on a number two position achieved by acquiring Cahill May Roberts in 2013 for 50 million euros.

In 2018, Uniphar acquired 15 pharmacies trading under the Allcare brand, and the healthcare distribution business SISK Group.

Reporting by Graham Fahy; Editing by Rachel Armstrong and Mark Potter

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