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13 July, 2017 - 11:13 By Tony Quested

Event specialist raising £60m at IPO

Wentworth Club

Arena Group, the international turnkey event design and delivery business, is listing its shares on London Stock Exchange’s AIM market. Target date for the IPO is July 25.

The company is raising around £60 million from UK and international institutional investors; the listing will help fund the future growth plans of the business. Arena opened a new Cambridgeshire hub in St Ives at the end of last year.

Arena Group provides managed solutions from concept and design through to the construction and delivery of temporary structures, seating and interiors for a host of major sporting, outdoor and leisure events around the world.

Contracts range in size and complexity from a simple equipment rental for a local outdoor event, to an integrated solution of multiple structures and interiors for a major international sporting event.

Arena Group is a global business with operations in the UK and Europe, Middle East and Asia and the Americas. Current clients include The All England Tennis Club (Wimbledon), The R & A, Henley Regatta, the Jockey Club, Abu Dhabi Sports Council, the European Tour, The Ryder Cup, the US Open and the PGA Championship.

To support the listing, Arena has boosted its board. Kenneth Hannah has been appointed chairman. He is also chair of Aggreko plc and Inchcape Plc. Ian Metcalfe has joined as a non-executive director. He is currently chairman of Commonwealth Games England and a member of the Rugby Football Union Council.

Arena Group CEO Greg Lawless said: “I am delighted to announce that our plans to apply for Admission to Aim are moving ahead as it marks a key milestone in the development of the group.

“We believe the listing will not only raise our international profile but also enable us to provide additional incentives, by way of a share option scheme, for our senior executive team around our global operations.

“The new funding leaves us with a significantly stronger balance sheet and provides us with the necessary funding – as well as access to further capital – that will help us to continue to grow the business both organically and by way of potential acquisitions.

“We are very fortunate to have a loyal and dedicated workforce of 750 employees across our 14 international bases and the successful flotation of the group is a testament to their hard work and support going back many years.”

• PHOTOGRAPH SHOWS: Wentworth Club

Kiss Communications

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