Cabot delays IPO, talked with CPPIB, Apax about potential buy: Reuters

Cabot Credit Management’s planned 1 billion pound (US$1.3 billion) initial public offering has been delayed by the resignation from its board of the former boss of Provident Financial.

A filing by Cabot, which is Britain’s biggest debt collection business and counts U.S. private equity group JC Flowers as a shareholder, shows former Provident Financial chief executive Peter Crook stepped down as a director on September 8.

Cabot, which is controlled by U.S. debt recovery business Encore Capital Group, had planned to announce its intention to float in London this week but Crook’s departure has delayed the process, a source close to the matter said.

Crook, who did not return a request for comment, left Provident after more than a decade in August following a profit warning by the British subprime lender, its second in two months, which sparked a 66 percent share price fall.

Provident also suspended its dividend and disclosed that the Financial Conduct Authority was investigating a product sold by its Vanquis Bank business.

Cabot is still planning to press ahead with its flotation this year, the source said.

A second source told Reuters that Canada Pension Plan Investment Board and U.K. private equity firm Apax Partners had separately expressed interest in buying Cabot this year, although the talks did not develop.

Apax and CPPIB declined to comment.

Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley and Jefferies are working on the listing, which could give Cabot a market capitalization of around 1 billion pounds, the first source said.

(Reporting by Ben Martin; editing by Alexander Smith)

(This story has been edited by Kirk Falconer, editor of PE Hub Canada)

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