Scottish Resources Plans London Float

LONDON (Reuters) – The owners of British coal miner Scottish Resources Group are seeking to bank more than 200 million pounds selling stakes held for 16 years in an initial public (IPO) offer next month, sources close to the deal said.

The company is currently mostly owned by investment vehicles Parkburn and Palmaris Capital (PALC.L), who have held their stakes since 1994 when it was created out of the privatisation of UK state miner British Coal.

The two investors — which hold 71 percent and 16 percent in SRG respectively — could sell all their holdings through the offer, the sources said.

Palmaris in a separate statement said it might sell “most or all of its shareholding”, but that a final decision depended on demand for the shares.

Scottish Resources will also seek to raise about 25 million pounds in new cash, to finance acquisitions and boost its balance sheet, the company said in a statement.

The company will announce a price range by the end of next week and the deal will result in a free float of nearly all the company, which may be valued at up to 250 million pounds ($376 million), one banking source said.

Don Nicolson, chief executive of Scottish Resources told Reuters in an interview on Monday that the money raised for the company in the IPO is “sufficient for (the company’s) needs in the short to medium term”.

Scottish Resources is Britain’s largest surface coal mining company and accounts for 20 percent of the country’s total coal production. It has nine operating surface coal mine sites in Scotland, which produced 3.4 million tonnes of coal in the year to March 27, up 12.3 per cent.

It is also working on renewable energy projects in Scotland, seeking to develop seven wind farm sites.

Coal is enjoying a resurgence of interest in the UK as the government frets about energy security and technology that captures emissions becomes more advanced.

Scotland’s first minister Alex Salmond released a statement on Monday praising the company. Panmure Gordon is acting as bookrunner for the IPO.

(Editing by Mike Nesbit)

($1=.6680 pounds)