Zoopla hires Credit Suisse to study possible flotation


Britain's second-biggest online estate agent Zoopla has hired investment bank Credit Suisse to explore growth opportunities, which could include a possible London stock market listing.

"We work with various advisers and have recently engaged Credit Suisse to help us explore further strategic opportunities as we continue to grow," the company said in a statement on Sunday.

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A report in Britain's Sunday Times newspaper said the six-year-old property website was exploring a stock market float that could value the firm at up to 1.3 billion pounds ($2.03 billion), citing bankers.

Private-equity backed British estate agent Foxtons last month said it plans to sell half the company on the London stock market in September, aiming to ride a recovery in the country's housing market.

Foxtons, majority owned by BC Partners , begins marketing its initial public offering (IPO) to investors ahead of an expected rush of autumn stock offerings which could include the privatization of Britain's Royal Mail postal service and the sale of some of the government's stake in Lloyds Banking Group .

The sale follows a successful stock market debut by Britain's largest estate agent Countrywide Holdings in March, and comes as government schemes to free up mortgage lending and boost buyer confidence fuel a rise in housing transactions.

(Reporting by Rhys Jones, editing by William Hardy)