Aston Martin to zoom on to the London Stock Exchange?

Today has seen the announcement by Aston Martin that it may be considering selling a minimum of 25 per cent of its shares on the London Stock Exchange. The luxury car manufacturer is synonymous with James Bond, with the DB5 being the first model to be driven by Sean Connery in Goldfinger and with the same model being brought out of retirement by Daniel Craig in Skyfall in 2012.

The company has had a colourful ownership since its inception in 1913, having changed hands between a number of private owners, both British and American, with Ford taking a shareholding in 1987, before fully acquiring the company in 1991. Ford retained control of Aston Martin until 2007, when a consortium, consisting of David Richards, John Sinders and two Kuwaiti investment companies acquired the business for GBP 439 million. In 2013, 37.5 per cent was sold to Investindustrial, an Italian private equity fund, which (fortunately some might think) out bid Mahindra and Mahindra, the Indian multinational conglomerate that includes tractor manufacturers in its portfolio of companies. Aston Martin benefited from the additional funds provided by Investindustrial in terms of investment and research into new vehicles, which have helped re-establish the brand’s popularity with a broader purchaser base and helped launch new models.

There have been rumours of an IPO before by Aston Martin back to 2015; however, at that point it was purely speculation in the media, whereas this time the company has formally announced it is expecting to publish a registration document imminently. So this time it looks like the IPO might actually speed on ahead.