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New Look axes IPO

New Look has pulled its IPO process, citing an unfavourable market backdrop.

Carl McPhail, chief executive of New Look, said: “We have taken the difficult decision to postpone the Initial Public Offering as a result of the considerable volatility in the equity markets. We remain convinced of the strengths of the New Look business and its suitability as a public company. We will re-evaluate our options when market conditions improve.”

The general retail sector has been derated by the City since Christmas and in the last two days two floats have been pulled in other sectors.

New Look was scheduled to publish its IPO prospectus on Monday to raise £650m of new shares through the flotation to reduce its debt. It is understood that investors have expressed concern over the fast fashion retailer’s ability to grow further in the UK and that its international expansion story is unproven.

The news came as rival value retailer Matalan pulled its sale process after interested parties balked at the £1.5bn price-tag set by founder John Hargreaves.

The focus will now fall on fashion group Supergroup, which owns young fashion brands Superdry and Cult, which has outlined intentions to float.

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