Price comparison website eyes IPO

The price comparison website Compare The Market is considering an initial public offering that could value it at close to $3.4 billion (£2billion). BGL Group, which also owns insurance businesses such as Beagle Street, has hired Rothschild to advise on a potential flotation on the London Stock Exchange.

Founded in 1992, BGL has become one of UK’s largest financial services providers and consumer insurance brokers, with more than 8million customers in the UK and mainland Europe. As part of the floatation plans, BGL has hired two independent non-executive directors to strengthen its board. Former investment banker Jitesh Gadhia and Bupa Insurance chairman Robin Phipps have joined the BGL board, increasing the number of its members to eight.

Gadhia is a board member of UK Financial Investments and has recently worked at Barclays and Blackstone and has advised on several mergers and acquisitions. Phipps, meanwhile, has held non-executive roles at Friends Life and Resolution and other companies after spending 25 years at Legal & General.

BGL is owned by the BHL Group, an international insurance conglomerate with businesses in South Africa and Australia. BHL plans to maintain a majority shareholding in BGL regardless of the UK businesses listing on the stock exchange.