Pool supplies retailer Leslie's prices IPO above target range

(Reuters) - U.S. swimming pool supplies retailer Leslie's Inc LESL.O on Wednesday priced its initial public offering (IPO) at $17 a share, above its target range, to sell $680 million in stock, it said in a statement.

Leslie’s, which is backed by private equity firm L Catterton and Singaporean sovereign wealth fund GIC, aimed to sell 40 million shares between $14 and $16 apiece.

The IPO values Phoenix, Arizona-based Leslie’s at $3.17 billion.

The IPO comes amid a surge in demand for backyard pools as consumers living under lockdown look for more at-home leisure activities.

Its rival Pool Corp POOL.O earlier this month reported record net sales for the third quarter and has seen its share price surge around 70% so far this year, far outpacing the U.S. benchmark S&P 500 stock index .SPX.

L Catterton led a buyout group for Leslie’s in 2017. Leslie’s has over 900 store locations and its products include above-ground pools, saunas and pool chemicals.

Leslie’s shares are due to begin trading on Nasdaq on Thursday under the symbol “LESL.”

Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley and BofA Securities are the lead underwriters for Leslie’s IPO.

Reporting by Joshua Franklin in Boston; additional reporting by Juby Babu in Bengaluru; Editing by Chris Reese, Cynthia Osterman and Uttaresh.V