Reports suggest Saga is in line for a flotation of £2.5bn later this year
Saga Group could be set for a £2.5bn flotation later this year after the travel and financial services giant admitted it was looking at an initial public offering (IPO).
The company, which specialises in the over 50s market, is gearing up to float in the second half of 2007 after appointing UBS and Merrill Lynch to "assist the board of Saga in exploring a possible IPO".
The announcement comes after reports that Saga's owner Charterhouse Capital Partners, which backed a management buy-out for £1.35bn in October 2004, was considering a sale or flotation.
A spokesperson for Saga confirmed that Charterhouse was still looking at the future structure of the company, after it surpassed threshold levels set by the private equity firm.
She added: "Close Brothers has been brought in to see what [the future structure] may be.
“It is looking at a whole series of options and one is an IPO in the second half of the year
A spokesperson for Saga
"It is looking at a whole series of options and one is an IPO in the second half of the year."
According to reports, Saga has been the focus of a number of unsolicited offers in recent months.
With one of the largest books of personal lines policies in the UK, as well as underwriting its own motor book from Gibraltar, Saga has attracted interest from insurance companies.
AXA, Aviva, and Zurich, have been touted as potential suitors.
But, speculation among analysts has suggested that Saga's lack of focus on financial services could deter many institutional investors.