Pictured (L-R): Ian Hyland, Business & Finance; Paul Acton, director of manufacturing, health and life sciences, SAS; and Bob Etchingham, CEO, Applegreen
Applegreen, a major petrol forecourt retailer in Ireland, with a significant and growing presence in the UK began trading ordinary shares on the AIM of London Stock Exchange and ESM on the Irish Stock Exchange.
From an operational base of 64 sites at the end of 2009, Applegreen has demonstrated a track record of high growth in challenging consumer markets. In the year to 31st December 2014, the Group had revenues of €937.3m and adjusted EBITDA of €22.8m. The Groups total number of sites increased from 152 in 2014 to 174 in June 2015.
Applegreen is now the number one motorway service area operator by number of sites and has a motor fuel market share of c.12% in Ireland.
On June 19th, Applegreen announced the first day of trading for its ordinary shares on the AIM of London Stock Exchange and its ESM on the Irish Stock Exchange.
According to the directors, the Group is well positioned to take advantage of future growth opportunities given that the Group has delivered annual growth rates of 19% in EBITDA and 24% in revenue over the last four financial years.
Applegreen is a well-developed brand and a consumer offering that is profitable and highly cash generative. The Group’s cash conversion for the last three financial years has been greater than 100% of its EBITDA.
The Group also has a disciplined investment and execution strategy and continues to exploit high growth/high margin convenience lines to generate strong returns into the future. Applegreen’s growth strategy is also focused on acquiring and developing new sites in the markets in which it operates and upgrading and rebranding its existing sites.
Speaking on the completion of the IPO, Bob Etchingham, CEO of Applegreen, said: “Along with the rest of the management team, I am delighted to announce the successful completion of our IPO and our first day of trading as a listed company. We are very pleased with our list of new institutional shareholders. Their support provides further endorsement of our strategy and our growth prospects.”
Etchingham said he believes the funds raised will provide the company with the platform to accelerate growth across the markets in which it operates and further expand and rebrand its portfolio of sites. “We look forward to embarking on the next step in the Company’s journey as a public listed company and generating significant value for our new shareholders.”
Through its IPO, Applegreen was able to raise €91.7m, the proceeds of which will be used by the company to accelerate its expansion and growth strategy. The number of Applegreen sites is set to increase and the IPO will allow the Group to upgrade and rebrand a number of existing sites also.
About the CEO
Bob Etchingham founded the Group in 1992 after working for Esso in the Republic of Ireland and the UK for over 10 years. Etchingham has over 30 years’ experience in the retail fuel market and founded the Group with a clear strategic vision of the Applegreen’s position in the market.
He has led the rapid growth in the Group’s site numbers in recent years, capitalising on the opportunities presented during the recession in Ireland and GB. He has a master’s degree in Economics from University College Dublin and was appointed to the Board in November 2010.
Business & Finance, Company of the Month
Business & Finance, in association with SAS Ireland, recognises excellence in business through the ‘Company of the Month’ award. The Company of the Month award recognises the company which best demonstrates outstanding business leadership, sustainable growth, innovative strategy, strong financial returns and employee development.