Center Parcs owner 'engages banks' on £2.5bn listing
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Center Parcs owner 'engages banks' on £2.5bn listing

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US-based private equity group Blackstone has hired several investment banks to lay the foundations for a £2.5bn (US$3.8bn, €3.4bn) London listing of UK leisure resort chain Center Parcs, according to reports.

Several media outlets cited separate sources indicating that Blackstone has hired Bank of America Merril Lynch and Morgan Stanley to act as global co-ordinators for the potential IPO. Barclays and Deutsche Bank were also reportedly chosen to work on the listing.

Blackstone, which has owned Center Parcs since 2006, is understood to have recently rejected a joint £2bn (US$3.1bn, €2.5bn) bid from BC Partners and the Canada Pension Plan (CPP) for the chain of leisure resorts.

Center Parcs has been reporting healthy profits in recent years and recorded a 99 per cent occupancy rate for the first three months of its new Woburn Forest resort, which launched in June 2014. The £250m (US$383m, €337m) complex features 625 lodges, a 75-bedroom hotel, Center Parcs’ largest Subtropical Swimming Paradise and an Aqua Sana spa.

Speaking to Leisure Opportunities on the day of the launch, Center Parcs CEO Martin Dalby said Woburn Forest would be the fifth and final Center Parcs site in England, with a development in Ireland the most likely next step.

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US-based private equity group Blackstone has hired several investment banks to lay the foundations for a £2.5bn (US$3.8bn, €3.4bn) London listing of UK leisure resort chain Center Parcs, according to reports.
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