Privately owned womenswear retailer Bonmarche took its first steps toward a possible flotation last week in a £40m deal with Friends Ivory & Sime Private Equity, the Sunday Telegraph reported. Bonmarche sold a 20 per cent stake to Friends Ivory & Sime, which plans to invest a total of £7.3m in the business, with Bank of Scotland providing a further £34m in bank loans and credit facilities. On completion of the deal Bonmarche will be worth close to £60m.