Newly appointed Moneygate chairman David Hickey says the national advice firm could look to float in three years time as it continues an aggressive acquisition strategy.
Hickey left Lighthouse, a rival national, in August last year following a failed attempt to de-list the company from Aim.
The proposal, which was voted on by shareholders in July 2012, would have required 75 per cent backing to succeed. In the event 53 per cent voted against leaving the stock exchange and Hickey quit a month later.
Hickey says he is not fundamentally against membership of the Aim and suggests a stock market listing will become a “serious option” for Moneygate in the next three years.
He says: “Moneygate is perfectly well funded at the moment and I have very strong views about when stock markets work well for companies and when they don’t.
“When the business is worth £100m I have no doubt we will look seriously at the merits of a quote, but until it is heading towards £100m there is a risk we will fall into the same liquidity trap that Lighthouse ended up in with people just not valuing it properly at all.
“In that situation, in my view, it is pointless being on the market. I do not think an early float is on the cards but think it will be a serious option in three years time.”
Hickey says Moneygate will continue to pursue small-scale advice firm acquisitions in the short-term.
He says: “Our IFA business has a very good acquisition model and we are interested in firms turning over £1m plus, although at this stage we are not in the market for firms turning over more than £10m.
“I do not envisage any large acquisitions in the next two years but we expect to make a large number of smaller acquisitions.
“I would expect us to acquire 5 to 10 new businesses between now and Christmas, and the same again next year.”