Hotel Chocolat’s shares rocket following stock market debut

Hotel Chocolat, the upmarket confectioner, has seen shares surge after the company listed on the stock market for the first time this week.

The company placed shares on stock market AIM at 148p each on 5 May. They rose 28% to 190p in early trading on 10 May, making the company worth over £200m.

The company, which was founded in 2003 as Choc Express, raised £55.5m from the share sale. It said it would spend £12m to add to its 81 shops, improve its website and increase production at its Cambridge factory.

The rest of the cash was split between founders Angus Thirlwell and Peter Harris, who keep a two-thirds stake in the company.

Hotel Chocolat owns a cocoa plantation on St Lucia. As well as its network of 83 shops, it also has two UK restaurants, one in London’s Borough Market and the other in Leeds.

In 2015, Hotel Chocolat saw better financial results than rival Thorntons for the first time.

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