Airtel Africa drops 15% in early trade after London debut
INTERNATIONAL - Airtel Africa shares fell as much as 15% in early trade on Friday after its London stock market debut, hitting a low of 67.5 pence ($0.8560) against an initial public offering price of 80 pence.
The company, a unit of India’s Bharti Airtel Ltd, last week set a range of 80 to 100 pence per share for its IPO, before pricing at the bottom of the spread.
The final offer comprised 744 million new shares, setting the deal size at 595 million pounds ($754.3 million) and the initial market capitalisation at about 3.1 billion pounds at issue, the company said.
“It does show the market is tricky,” said a person close to the transaction. “(But) this is day one.”
Parent Bharti Airtel also dipped after its listing in 2002, he said, but eventually its market capitalisation increased substantially.
Shares in Volkswagen’s truck unit Traton meanwhile opened at 27 euros ($30.75) before edging down to 26.47 euros a share on their first day of trading following their stock market listing in Frankfurt and Stockholm.
Other market listings have had a torrid time this year, and European IPO volumes are at their lowest level year-to-date since 2012 at $59.56 billion equivalent, according to Refinitiv data.
The highest profile of these was Uber Technologies Inc in the United States, which is only now trading near its IPO price after making its debut in May.
Most recently in London, shares in UAE-based payments and foreign exchange company Finablr slipped 5% on its market debut, and are still trading below the IPO price.