Towergate boss reported to be considering selling 25% to Candover

Peter Cullum was this week reported to be in talks to sell up to 25% of Towergate, the firm he founded and chairs, to private equity group Candover for up to £850m, valuing the company at over £3bn.

Though Towergate refused to confirm reports of the deal which would value the company at over £3bn, it is widely seen as a means of raising capital before a flotation.

Cullum, who currently owns two-thirds of Towergate, would remain the majority shareholder, it is believed.

The timing of the deal has been linked to changes in the capital gains tax regime, to come into force in April.

It has been speculated that some of the money raised by any deal would be distributed among Towergate’s senior management under the current, more favourable tax regime, with the rest reinvested in the business.

Candover put up half of the £15m needed to start Towergate in business 10 years ago.

A Towergate spokesman said: “Towergate notes the recent press speculation regarding a possible refinancing. Consistent with our normal practice of evaluating all strategic opportunities, we have held a number of discussions relating to the capital requirements of the business.

“These discussions are at a preliminary stage and there is no certainty that these discussions will lead to any changes in the existing structure.”