Wednesday, July 15, 2009

PricewaterhouseCoopers Report: Second Quarter IPO Market Records First Increase in Activity Since 2007

/PRNewswire/ -- The volume of United States (US) initial public offerings (IPOs) continued to remain low in the first half of 2009. For the first six months, there were only 14 IPOs that raised $2.3 billion, a significant drop from the 43 offerings that generated $27.7 billion for the same period in 2008. The first half of 2008 saw the largest US IPO in history, the $ 17.9 billion Visa Inc. IPO, which skewed the amount of proceeds raised during that period. By comparison, the largest IPO in the first half of 2009 was the $720 million Mead Johnson Nutrition Co. IPO.

A quarter-over-quarter comparison saw an increase in IPO activity in the second quarter of 2009 for the first time since the fourth quarter of 2007. The downward trend in IPO volume started in the first quarter of 2008 and reached its lowest point in the first quarter of 2009. That quarter (Q1 2009) saw only two IPOs that raised $722 million, the lowest in terms of volume in recent history. There were 12 IPOs that raised $1.6 billion in the second quarter of 2009 compared with 18 IPOs that raised $5.1 billion in the second quarter of 2008.

"A few select companies were able to take advantage of the capital markets which started to improve in late March," said Scott Gehsmann, a capital markets partner in PricewaterhouseCoopers' Transaction Services practice. "As we move toward the later part of the year, we will see more companies testing the IPO waters."

The first six months of 2009 saw eight financial sponsor-backed IPOs, comprising 57% of the total volume, and raising an aggregate of $1.0 billion or 44% of the total proceeds. This is significantly higher than 26% of the total volume and 6% of the total proceeds during the same period in 2008.

China was the only non-US issuer, and had four offerings that raised $0.3 billion in proceeds during the first half of 2009. There were 11 non-US issuer IPOs during the same period in 2008, raising $1.6 billion in proceeds.

The NYSE continued to lead in 2009 IPO volume with 11 IPOs raising $2.0 billion in proceeds, 88% of the total proceeds raised during the first six months of 2009.

Similar to the US, global IPO activity saw modest growth in the second quarter of 2009. Europe brought 28 companies public in the April to June period raising $0.8 billion, but that paled in comparison to the second quarter of 2008 when there were 133 offerings raising $18.3 billion. The four largest IPOs of the second quarter accounted for 88% of the total money raised. Hong Kong saw 18 IPOs that raised $2.2 billion in the first half of 2009, which was a 66% drop in terms of value from the same period in 2008. Similar to other markets, the majority of the IPOs in Hong Kong in the first half of 2009 occurred during the second quarter. Brazil witnessed Latin America's largest offering with the $4.3 billion Visanet IPO in June 2009. This was also the largest IPO globally in the first half of 2009.

"Stronger second quarter IPO activity bodes well for the second half of the year," noted Gehsmann. "In fact, a number of companies have already begun to assess their IPO-readiness in preparation for the inevitable return of the IPO market."

US IPO Watch is a quarterly survey of all IPOs listed on US exchanges. These include IPOs by domestic and foreign companies, best-efforts, business development companies, filings with the FDIC, and bank demutualizations. IPOs do not include unit investment trusts and fully classified closed-end funds. Visit our website,, for our 2006, 2007 and 2008 US IPO Watch reports.

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