Private equity group KKR cashes out completely from Trainline

A group of Trainline investors, led by its biggest shareholder KKR, have cashed out completely from the online rail bookings company, months after the group had one of this year’s most successful European initial public offerings.

The shareholders, which include Ares, Index Ventures and Alven Capital, raised gross proceeds of £279m, said a statement on Tuesday from JPMorgan, one of the bookrunners for the placing. The investors sold an aggregate of 68m Trainline shares, representing about 14.1 per cent of the group’s issued share capital, to institutional investors at a price of 410p.

That’s around a 7 per cent discount to Monday’s close of 442p. The group’s shares were priced at 350p each in the June IPO, the second largest in the UK this year. The UK-based bookings group had a valuation close to £2bn on its first day of trading after it listed in June.

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Shares in the bookings group fell about 4 per cent to trade at about 424p early in London on Tuesday.

Private equity group KKR, which before Tuesday’s sale owned a 12.4 per cent stake, or 59.6m, Trainline shares, was by far the biggest shareholder in the transport booking group, having bought it for around £500m in 2015. The other selling shareholders owned 1.7 per cent stake.

KKR owned a 79 per cent stake in the company ahead of the flotation, which it reduced to 25 per cent immediately after. It opted to take the company public after offers from other private equity groups fell short of its target valuation.

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In September the private equity group along with Ares, Alven Capital and Index Venture sold down shares worth £285m, representing a 13.6 per cent stake.

Trainline brought in total revenues of £129m in the six months to August, compared with £100m a year earlier. It expects full-year revenue growth in the low to mid 20 per cent range.

The news came a day after the shareholders announced their intention to sell the shares. Trainline will receive no proceeds from the sale.



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