(Adds details, comments from CEO)
By John Revill
ZURICH, April 9 (Reuters) - The price range for the flotation of Swiss company Stadler Rail has narrowed to 36 to 39 Swiss francs ($36.03 to $39.03) per share, towards the top end of the indicated price range, according to a person familiar with the matter.
The Swiss train and carriage maker had an original price range of 33 to 41 francs per share in the IPO, which is due to take place on April 12.
The pricing gives Stadler an implied market capitalisation of 3.6-3.9 billion Swiss francs and is the latest large flotation in Switzerland following the spinoff of Novartis’s Alcon eye-care unit on Tuesday in which the company’s market capitalisation hit 28 billion Swiss francs.
There had been good interest in the Stadler flotation, with retail and institutional investors from Europe and Switzerland making a commitment to buy shares. No large industrial players from the rail sector had registered interest, according to the source.
Billionaire Chairman Peter Spuhler is selling down part of his 80 percent stake in Stadler, although he intends to stay on as the largest investor in the company he has run since 1989.
Chief Executive Thomas Ahlburg said a flotation would help Stadler finance more acquisitions and also strengthen its hand when it bid for contracts.
“Being on the stock exchange that is much easier to raise some capital,” Ahlburg told Reuters when the flotation was announced last month.
Ahlburg said he did not think by listing Stadler itself could be a target in the current round of consolidation in the rail sector.
“We don’t consider ourselves to be a target. It is more likely we are going to be among those who intend to buy certain pieces if they are available on the market,” he said.
Companies involved in signaling or digitalisation would be among the areas Stadler would be interested in, as well as maintenance and service companies.
Credit Suisse and UBS are acting as joint global coordinators and joint bookrunners for the Stadler IPO. BNP Paribas, Citigroup and Zuercher Kantonalbank are acting as joint bookrunners and UniCredit Bank as co-lead manager, while Reichmuth & Co, St. Galler Kantonalbank and Thurgauer Kantonalbank are acting as selling agents.
$1 = 0.9993 Swiss francs Reporting by John Revill; Editing by Michael Shields