Top vintage with almost no German participation

D.he spectacular IPOs took place elsewhere again this year: that of the accommodation broker AirBnB in America, for example, which more than doubled its issue price on the first day of trading. Or that of the Chinese toy manufacturer Pop Mart, who did the same. All over the world, a total of 1,322 companies dared to step onto the floor in 2020, 15 percent more than in the previous year, as the consulting company EY announced on Tuesday. Ironically, the Corona year will be the top year for IPOs.

Germany had just twelve initial listings this year. The more prominent examples included the Siemens spin-off Siemens Energy and the armaments company Hensoldt. The German vaccine manufacturer Curevac – like so many young healthcare companies – preferred to be listed on the New York Nasdaq. Overall, the United States dominated, where the number of IPOs rose by a third to 222, and China, including Hong Kong, where 514 companies made their IPOs 41 percent more. The issuing volume of all IPOs in the world rose by 26 percent to $ 263 billion, according to EY, the highest level since 2010.

Up to 16 German IPOs

In Germany, some companies postponed or changed their stock exchange plans in the first half of the year, says EY partner Martin Steinbach. The market then gained momentum again in the second half of the year, so that it is confident for the next year. Steinbach currently considers up to 16 German IPOs to be possible. The used car platform Auto1 and the radio tower division of Vodafone Vantage Towers are currently considered candidates. A possible spin-off of the Deutsche Telekom radio towers is also being discussed on the market.

“At first glance it seems absurd that IPOs are booming in such a difficult year as 2020,” says Steinbach. An important driver is still the “enormously high liquidity that is in the market and is looking for investment opportunities.” The pandemic has also led to a surge in digitization. “2020 was pure disruption,” says Steinbach. “For the economy, but also in relation to the way we work and shop, how we get around, how we spend our free time and how we communicate. This year, some trends have become enormously important – and thus also helped promising stock market candidates to new growth opportunities. ”This year, technology and healthcare companies in particular ventured onto the floor.

Strong final quarter

In Europe as a whole, there was an upward trend with lower growth rates. The number of IPOs rose by 17 percent to 176, the issue volume climbed by nine percent to 27 billion dollars. The fourth quarter proved to be very robust, as Steinbach points out. With an increase in global issuance revenues over the very strong same period last year by 4 percent to 97 billion dollars, while the number of transactions climbed by 19 percent to 448. However, the positive development was not noticeable in all IPO markets. Revenues on the Chinese stock exchanges fell by six percent and the number of deals fell by 14 percent. America and Europe, on the other hand, recorded significant increases in the fourth quarter – both in terms of issuing volume and in terms of the number of IPOs.


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