Bridgepoint, the UK-based private equity firm, is working with bankers to prepare a US listing of the Pret a Manger, the fast-growing food-and-coffee-shop chain beloved by office workers.

JP Morgan and Jefferies have recently been appointed to lead an initial public offering that could take place in New York before the end of the year, according to two people with knowledge of the situation.

Credit Suisse, Barclays and Piper Jaffray are also working on the deal. Details of the appointment of bankers running the IPO were first reported by Bloomberg.

The appointment took place recently and terms between Bridgepoint, the company and bankers are under negotiation, one of the people said: “Nothing has been decided on anything, there is now a lot of research and prep work to be done.”

JP Morgan declined to comment.

Bridgepoint said:

As a committed shareholder in Pret we are always exploring appropriate opportunities to ensure the future growth of the company. If such opportunities materialise, we will update the market.

Pret, which was founded in London in 1986, recently reported a 15 per cent increase in total sales for 2016 to £776m. The company opened 50 new stores, taking its total number of ​shops to 444. Earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation rose 11 per cent to £93m.

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