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Candyking lists shares worth $76.2m on stock exchange

By Oliver Nieburg+

03-Dec-2013

Candyking eyes acquisitions and hopes to pay off debts with public listing
Candyking eyes acquisitions and hopes to pay off debts with public listing

Nordic pick & mix firm Candyking intends to trade 49% of the company’s shares on the Nordic stock exchange to raise brand awareness, pursue acquisitions and to reduce debts.

Candyking has been owned by private equity firms Accent and EQT since 2008. The two private equity firms will retain a 51% stake in Candyking, but have an option to divest a further 33% in the share offering.

Rationale for the listing

Candyking said in a statement: “Candyking’s board of directors and management expect that the Offering and listing of the shares will generate increased attention and brand awareness among existing and potential customers, suppliers and consumers.

“The Offering and listing also provide the Company with access to the Swedish and international capital markets for any future capital needs as well as enable the Company to pursue acquisitions with payment in own shares.”

“In addition, the purpose of the Offering is to reduce the Company’s indebtedness and repay the Company’s shareholder loans…”

Share offering

Candyking will offer 18,518,517 shares worth SEK 500m ($76.2m). 11,481,481 are new shares, while 7,037,036 are existing shares offered by Accent and EQT.

The shares are expected to be sold for around SEK 27-32 ($4.12-$4.88) each.

Candyking shares will begin to be traded under the symbol “CANDY” on the NASDAQ OMX Stockholm on 12 December this year. The settlement day is set for 17 December 2013.

Candyking & Nordic market

Candyking supplies pick & mix confectionery to around 10,000 retailers. It also operates a natural snacks pick & mix concept called Parrot’s, a luxury chocolate pick & mix concept (Premiyum) and Candyking Favorites, a pre-packed pick & mix concept.

 The firm recorded net sales of SEK 1,748m ($266.5m) in 2012, which corresponded to 40,800 metric tons of confectionery.

The share offering values the total Candyking business at around SEK 994-1,045m ($152m-$159m).

Candyking was founded in 1984 and is the leading pick & mix supplier in the Nordics. It is also active in the UK, Ireland, Poland, the Czech Republic, Slovakia and Hungary.

The company valued the Nordic confectionery market at SEK 36bn in 2012, with an annual growth rate in volume terms of 1.2% between 2002 and 2012.

It claimed that pick & mix confectionery represented one third of the total confectionery consumption in Sweden.

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