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UPDATE 1-Waberer's International prices IPO at bottom of target range
June 30, 2017 / 2:07 PM / 5 months ago

UPDATE 1-Waberer's International prices IPO at bottom of target range

(Adds analyst comment)

BUDAPEST, June 30 (Reuters) - Hungarian haulier Waberer’s International priced its initial public offering (IPO) at 5,100 forints per share on Friday, valuing it at 90.2 billion forints ($333 million) in Budapest’s biggest stock market debut for nearly two decades.

Waberer’s said it would raise about 14 billion forints (45.34 million euros) in net proceeds, which will be used partly to finance a planned acquisition of Polish rival Link. The Hungarian company, which has a fleet of 3,500-plus vehicles, has said it expects Link to cost about 32 million euros.

The IPO pricing makes shares in what is one of Europe’s biggest haulage businesses look cheap compared with European rivals, said Balint Kovacs, equities analyst at local brokerage Equilor.

However, the sector carries risks, including changing European regulation as well as the outcome of talks on Britain’s planned departure from the European Union, he added.

“Given that the shares were sold at the bottom of the proposed 5,100-6,300 forint target range and the number of shares sold is also well below expectations, the stock will feature a smaller free float and lower liquidity,” Kovacs said in a note.

Waberer‘s, which launched the IPO on June 19, said that 82 percent of the total offering was bought by institutional investors, with retail investors taking just below 18 percent.

The free float was planned to account for about 27 percent of the company’s share capital and the stock is expected to start trading in Budapest on July 6, joining a market dominated by only four blue-chips companies that account for the brunt of turnover. (1 euro = 308.7875 forints) (Reporting by Krisztina Than and Gergely Szakacs; Editing by David Goodman)

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