Skrill Holdings Planning $250M IPO for April

UK-based online payment company Skrill Holdings is planning to raise about $250 million from a London listing in April, Reuters reported. The initial public offering is designed to help the company fund expansion, Reuters said. Skrill, which operates online payment site, is majority owned by private equity group Investcorp Technology Partners.

(Reuters) – British online payments provider Skrill Holdings plans to raise around $250 million from a London listing in April to boost the group’s profile and help fund its expansion into new products and locations.

Skrill, which operates online payments system, said on Monday that as well as existing shares it would sell around 80 million pounds ($129 million) of new shares in the initial public offering (IPO).

Order books for the listing are not expected to open until the beginning of April, with final pricing expected mid-late April, a source close to the deal said, as the firm wants to take a few weeks to get investors familiar with its story.

“There haven’t been that many UK mid-cap tech IPOs, so we want to spend probably a bit longer educating the market,” said the source, adding that the firm was targeting total proceeds of around $250 million from the listing.

The company, which has more than 15 million registered users and mainly operates in Europe, said it was well placed to grow in developing countries and also hopes to expand its U.S. business.

“The IPO is an important milestone for Skrill and will help enhance the group’s profile and status … as well as providing funding to capitalise on the exciting growth opportunities the group has identified,” Skrill Chief Executive Martin Ott said in a statement.

Skrill said it would consider acquiring internet or mobile-based payment providers, as well as technology businesses which would help expand its product base or geographical reach.

Last month, Skrill appointed Bob Wigley as chairman ahead of the possible flotation. Wigley, the current chairman of directories group Yell Group , was chairman of Merrill Lynch Europe until January 2009.

The firm, majority owned by private equity group Investcorp Technology Partners, said it had grown its revenues from 33.8 million euros in 2008, to 66.7 million euros in 2010, a compound annual growth rate of 40 percent.

Morgan Stanley and Jefferies are running the offering, along with Bank of America Merrill Lynch. ($1=.6203 Pound) (Reporting by Kylie MacLellan)