Major aggregator silent on IPO reports

One of Australia’s largest mortgage aggregation groups has reportedly been tipped to list on the ASX.

Last Friday The Australian reported that AFG will start its roadshow this week for an initial public offering through Macquarie Capital.

“According to research released from the bank on the float, the company has been valued at $266-$305 million, which equates to 13.5 to 15.5 times its forecasted earnings for the 2016 financial year,” reported The Australian.

“Listed mortgage broker Mortgage Choice is being treated as a comparable business to price the float."

Mortgage Business spoke with AFG executive director Kevin Matthews on Friday. When asked if the aggregator would begin an IPO roadshow this week, Mr Matthews said he would not provide comment on the matter.

In February, Mr Matthews spoke out about speculation that Westpac Bank had the group in its crosshairs as an acquisition target.

At the time Mr Matthews dismissed the rumours as “pure speculation”, explaining that he and AFG managing director Brett McKeon were in Sydney in early February to meet Westpac chief executive Brian Hartzer.

“We both walked into their offices on Kent Street together and somebody must have seen us and speculated,” he said.

“There is no truth to the speculation that Westpac are ‘running a ruler’ over AFG. If there was, we would probably be under some confidentiality clause and wouldn’t be able to talk about it anyway.

“It is pure speculation. None of it has come from us.”

However, Mr Matthews neither confirmed nor denied that an IPO was in progress when speaking with Mortgage Business on Friday.

More to come. 

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