LadBible float hands founder Solly Solomou a £200m share windfall 1

LadBible float hands founder Solly Solomou a £200m share windfall

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LadBible founder Solly Solomou lands a £200m Christmas bonus as online ‘lad’s mag’ joins junior AIM exchange


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One of London’s last floats in 2021 landed online ‘lad’s mag’ founder Solly Solomou with a £200million Christmas bonus.

Solomou, 30, sold around £50million in shares but held on to a £150million stake yesterday as LBG Media – the owner of LadBible – joined the junior AIM exchange.

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The youth-focused news and entertainment site was valued at £360million when it was listed yesterday for 175p per share.

LadBible founder Solly Solomou sold around £50m in shares but held onto a £150m stake as parent company LBG Media - the owner of LadBible - joined the junior AIM exchange

LadBible founder Solly Solomou sold around £50m in shares but held onto a £150m stake as parent company LBG Media – the owner of LadBible – joined the junior AIM exchange

But investors were lured by its access to hard-to-reach 18 to 34-year-olds and shares surged 14.3 per cent, or 25p, to 200p. The Manchester firm closed with a market cap of £411million.

Solomou and his co-founder Arian Kalantari said the company started when they were looking for a way to engage with people ‘just like us’.

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LadBible was founded in 2012 and became known for its sexual jokes and content. Its growth was largely credited to it filling the vacuum left by magazines like Loaded, FHM, Zoo and Nuts. 

But it has refined its tone and prides itself now on publishing content promoting issues like diversity and sustainability.

It also covers mainstream news and interviewed Chancellor Rishi Sunak last year.

Some 360 staff work in London, Manchester, Dublin, Melbourne and Sydney, and 45 per cent of readers are female.

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Its websites had 28bn views last year, and it made £23million revenue in the six months to June 30, with £5.7million profit. 

And to boost credibility it recruited Carol Kane, co-founder of the online fashion site Boohoo, to its board.

It also has the backing of Kane’s Boohoo co-founder and billionaire Mahmud Kamani, who until yesterday owned a third of the company.

Kamani, 57, cashed in, selling £23.9million worth of shares, but still owns a 24 per cent stake, worth £71.6million.

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