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Huel hires bankers as it considers launching London IPO

Huel, the plant-based food maker based in Hertfordshire, has consulted bankers to advise on listing on the London Stock Exchange in a move that could value the company at up to £1bn ($1.33bn).

The Hertfordshire-based company has claimed that it is currently exploring its options, with an initial public offering (IPO) being the preferred choice to fund future growth. According to the Financial Times, Huel is currently working with Goldman Sachs (GS) and JPMorgan (JPM) as it discusses the move.

The other alternatives being considered include a potential sale, but an IPO is said to be the preferred option. Huel has declined to comment on the plans.

Huel makes meal replacements from plant ingredients and their products include powders, drinks and protein bars. The ingredients they use include oats, pea, rice, flaxseed, coconut, and sunflower.

Its products are marketed at people who are perhaps too busy to eat a full meal but want to get “complete” nutritional value whilst on the go, and the company has enjoyed considerable growth during the pandemic.

Huel posted turnover of £71.6m in the year to July 2020, up from £50.2m a year earlier. Business Leader also profiled the company last year and Huel CEO, James McMaster revealed their run-rate revenue is around £76m.

The company was established in 2015 by Julian Hearn, who holds a 53% stake in the firm, after he sold Mash Up Media, an affiliate marketing company.

The announcement comes after the company recently expanded into the US, Japan, and continental Europe.

The last time the company raised money was in 2018, where Highland Europe, a significant shareholder in the company, invested £20m, valuing Huel at £220m.

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