Belfast Telegraph

Flotations quadruple in busy 12 months for LSE

The number of stock market flotations more than quadrupled in 2010 amid a revival for company listings, the London Stock Exchange (LSE) has revealed.

More stable market conditions saw 89 initial public offerings (IPOs) on the LSE over the past year, up from just 22 last year.

The LSE said firms listing on the London market raised £10.1bn against £1.5bn the year before when the recession hit investor appetite for IPOs.

This year has seen a swathe of firms joining the LSE, including online grocery delivery service Ocado, Superdry fashion group SuperGroup and more recently Betfair, the world's largest international online sports betting provider.

In July, Essar Energy - one of India's top private sector power and oil and gas firms - also listed raising £1.3bn, marking the largest ever Indian IPO in London.

Tracey Pierce, director of equity primary markets at the LSE, said: "We have seen a rejuvenation in the IPO market during 2010.

"Whilst last year our markets supported a significant amount of fundraising through further issues, 2010 injected some very positive signs of life into the new issues market, including a number of major wins for London."

The data from the LSE shows that despite teething troubles for some new market entrants, firmer market conditions have seen the highest number of stock market flotations since before the credit crisis struck.

IPOs slumped after the crunch, dropping from 87 on the main market in 2007 to 35 in 2008 and nine last year.

In 2010, 46 firms floated on the main London market while 43 listed on the Alternative Investment Market (AIM).

Wider market conditions have stabilised this year as the global recovery has got under way, with the FTSE 100 Index in London up around 11% this year.

Higher oil and metal prices are also expected to lead to increased investor appetite for commodity related stock market flotations in 2011, according to investment firm St Peter Port.

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