Flybe considers public offering

Flybe considers public offering

Flybe, the largest domestic airline in the UK, is considering an initial public offering, valuing the company at up to £200 million.

The carrier is believed to be close to making a final decision on whether to go ahead with a float with an announcement due in days.

However, no final decision has yet been taken.

Chairman and chief executive Jim French indicated when issuing full-year results in September that “as and when the market is in a position to give us a sensible valuation, we would look at going to the market”.

Flybe’s advisers, Bank of America Merrill Lynch and Investec, are known to have been working on the potential float for some time.


It is understood Flybe is seeking to double in size through organic growth and buying overseas carriers such as Swiss regional airline Flybaboo and a Finnish carrier.

The Flybe brand is eight years old but has traded under various names for the past 20 years.

It was set up as Jersey European Airways and then became British European Airways as it expanded with the backing of the late Sir Jack Walker, the steel tycoon who owned Blackburn Rovers football club.

The carrier is remains 65 per cent owned by the trust of Jack Walker while British Airways owns 15% after selling its BA Connect arm to Flybe.