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Hargreaves Lansdown Sees ‘Immense’ Demand for Royal Mail Shares

Oct. 15 (Bloomberg) -- Hargreaves Lansdown Plc, the U.K.’s largest retail broker, reported “immense” demand from clients for shares in the initial public offering of Royal Mail Group Ltd. and apologized for any delays in transacting orders.

Hargreaves Lansdown “has seen unprecedented public interest in the flotation of the Royal Mail,” Chief Executive Officer Ian Gorham said in a statement published today. “In addition to interest from existing clients, a large proportion of our Royal Mail investors were new clients, many investing for the first time.”

Royal Mail rose 38 percent on its trading debut last week and was seven times oversubscribed by retail investors in the U.K.’s biggest state asset sale since British Rail was broken up in the 1990s. Gorham apologized to the “minority” of its customers who experienced delays in buying the shares and said there were no notable financial implications.

Assets under administration jumped 8 percent to a record 39.3 billion pounds ($63 billion) in the three months to Sept. 30 from June 30, Bristol, England-based Hargreaves Lansdown said in the statement.

The shares rose 3 percent to 1,040 pence by 8:01 a.m. in London. They’ve increased 53 percent this year, giving the company a market value of 4.9 billion pounds.

Revenue jumped 13 percent to 77.9 million pounds and client numbers rose by 20,000 to 528,000. Net new clients gained relating to the Royal Mail will be reported in the next quarter, the company said.

To contact the reporter on this story: Gavin Finch in London at gfinch@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Edward Evans at eevans3@bloomberg.net

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