Middlesbrough-based pawnbroker Ramsdens has filed for an IPO on AIM – the LSE’s junior market – with the goal of raising £15.6m at a valuation of £26.5m, with individual shares likely to be valued at 86p.

The company, which famously sponsors Middlesbrough FC, offers foreign currency exchange and pawnbroking loans in addition to buying and selling precious metals, jewellery, watches and electronics. It already boasts 127 stores and served more than 700,000 customers last year.

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The float, which is expected to take place on 15th February 2017, comes just two years after Ramsdens received backing from NorthEdge private equity firm, who are looking to retain a stake in the company.

Chief Executive Peter Kenyon said the following about the float:

Today’s announcement marks a very exciting new phase in Ramsdens’ development.

Ramsdens is an established, diversified and cash-generative business with a recognised and trusted brand. The group has a large, growing and repeat customer base and a clear strategy to deliver a number of growth opportunities.

We are pleased with the strong response to the placing on Aim, reflecting investors’ recognition of the group’s exciting prospects. We look forward to creating value for existing and new shareholders as a public company.