According to a report by Bloomberg, DB recently filed a prospectus with the Dutch regulator for an initial public offering (IPO). DB selected Amsterdam in order to access higher growth in continental Europe. The move also reflects the British-based company’s recent growth in continental Europe, which now accounts for the majority of its business, and a general shift from listings in Britain to Europe since Britain voted to leave the European Union.
Bloomberg cited people familiar with the matter but who did not want to disclose their identity.
DB announced plans in March to sell off Arriva as a means to bring the railway’s debts under control while enabling Arriva to generate the financial scope for expansion. In January DB announced a five-point plan to improve its finances in the face of declining profitability at many of its subsidiaries.
DB bought Arriva as a wholly-owned subsidiary for £1.6bn in 2010. The company is looking to make a profit on its book value of €2.2bn with Arriva reporting a turnover of €5.44bn in 2018.
Bloomberg says Arriva has drawn initial interest from rival transport companies as well as infrastructure and private equity firms. DB is expected to decide on whether to proceed with a sale or an IPO by mid-September, when the company’s board will meet for an update on the process.
If it decides to proceed with an IPO, the sale of a majority stake on the Dutch stock exchange could take place as early as the fourth quarter.