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JD Sports founders to net £20mln as Footasylum confirms £170mln AIM IPO next week

When David Makin sold out of JD Sports back in 2005, he almost immediately set up Footasylum and was joined by his former business partner John Wardle a few years later

footasylum store
Even after the IPO, the Makin family will still hold a 63% stake in Footasylum

Footasylum PLC (LON:FOOT) is set to list on AIM next Thursday (2 November) in a float that will value the sports fashion retailer at £171.3mln.

The company, which first unveiled plans to join the junior market earlier this month, is selling 26.5mln new and 13.4mln existing shares at £1.64 apiece, raising gross proceeds of £65.4mln.

The selling shareholders are the two founders of JD Sports, David Makin and John Wardle, and their relatives, which will net the families just shy of £20mln.

Makin family still retains a 63% stake

Even after the sale, the Makin family will still hold a 63% stake worth £107.9mln.

As for the rest of the money raised, Footasylum boss and Makin’s daughter Clare Nesbitt said it would go towards funding the business’ expansion plans, although £3.9mln will be set aside to repay a director’s loan owed to Wardle.

Assuming the float goes as planned, former JD chief executive Barry Brown will join the board as executive chairman next summer when John Wardle retires from the role.

“Today marks the beginning of an exciting new chapter in the Footasylum story,” said chief executive Nesbitt.

"We are delighted that our product-led, multi-channel expansion strategy has resonated so strongly with investors, and are thrilled to have received such a strong level of demand for the placing.

“We welcome our new shareholders and look forward to delivering the significant potential that we see for Footasylum as a quoted business."

Set up back in 2005 by JD founder

Wardle and Makin pocketed around £45mln after they sold out of JD Sports – which still bears their first initials – back in 2005.

Makin used his chunk of the proceeds almost immediately to set up Footasylum and was joined three years later by his former business partner.

Footasylum, which generated underlying earnings of £11.2mln on revenues of £147mln last year, focuses on premium ‘on-trend’ footwear and apparel and stocks brands such as Calvin Klein, Nike and Adidas, as well as several lines of own-brand products.

There are currently 60 stores across the UK but it plans to use some of the funds from the IPO to more than double that figure to 150, targeting between eight and ten new openings a year.

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