(Alliance News) - London-listed pollster and analytics firm YouGov PLC is considering a listing in the US, the Financial Times reported on Monday, which it said would represent the latest blow to the London Stock Exchange.
Recently-appointed Chair Stephan Shakespeare, who founded the company with former UK chancellor Nadhim Zahawi in 2000, said YouGov was considering moving its listing following a recent acquisition that has bolstered its operations.
This could include moving YouGov's primary listing to the US or via a secondary listing, according to the FT. YouGov floated in London in 2005.
The FT reported that YouGov's largest market is in the US, where it works with technology groups and consumer brands as well as providing detailed political coverage.
"I think the markets are better at supporting companies like ours there," Shakespeare told the FT.
"[The US] spends the most on marketing data; they are the most savvy. It is a natural base."
If it decides to shift its listing to the US, the FT said YouGov will join the growing number of UK firms seeking higher valuations and deeper pools of capital in the US.
Shakespeare said that YouGov had previously been too small to consider moving to the larger US market. However, YouGov's agreed acquisition of the consumer panel business of German market research group GfK SE for EUR315 million at the end of July had made the move more viable.
"Until recently, we've been too small. With the recent acquisition, that's increased our size by 50 per cent overnight. I do feel that we could be introduced to a bigger market, [which] would be helpful," Shakespeare told the FT.
Shares in YouGov were up 0.3% to 947.00 pence each in London on Monday early morning, with a market capitalisation of around GBP1.09 billion.
The FT noted that although now bigger in the US, YouGov is still closely associated with UK politics, especially its polling of voting intentions. Shakespeare said the company would seek new markets, in particular in Europe.
Earlier this month, Shakespeare was replaced as chief executive by Steve Hatch, former Meta Platforms Inc vice president for Northern Europe.
Shakespeare and his family own around 5% of YouGov.
By Greg Rosenvinge, Alliance News reporter
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