Prepared food giant Bakkavor is aiming to raise around £100m through a stock market flotation.

The business, which claims to hold a 30% share of the UK fresh prepared food category, operates in sectors including pizza, bread, salads and desserts. Its revenue was £1.7bn last year, with adjusted EBITDA of £146m.

Employing 19,000 staff and operating 26 factories in the UK, Bakkavor supplies retailers including Tesco, Marks & Spencer, Sainsbury’s and Waitrose, and also operates in the US and China.

The planned share offer will comprise an issue of new shares to raise around £100m, and the sale of part of the shares held by Baupost and founders Agust and Lydur Gudmundsson. Proceeds will be used to invest in the business and reduce its current debt.

“We have long-established relationships with the UK’s leading food retailers, and our quality products are core in their efforts to gain greater exposure in the fresh convenience sector,” said CEO Agust Gudmundsson.

“We have a long track record of delivering sustainable growth in revenue and profits and there is considerable momentum right across the group. This offering will enable us to continue to invest to ensure we create value for all investors and stakeholders.”

Bakkavor also announced that Simon Burke, currently an independent non-executive director, will be appointed as independent non-executive chairman. The company’s current non-executive chairman Lydur Gudmundsson, will remain on the board as a non-executive director. The company has also appointed Sue Clark, formerly managing director of SABMiller Europe, as independent non-executive director.

“With solid foundations in place for the next stage of the company’s development, Bakkavor is excellently positioned to continue to build on its success and capitalise on the growth opportunities ahead,” said Burke.