European IPOs rebounded to the highest level in more than 20 years during the first quarter, as the ongoing vaccination programmes across Europe and government support programmes boosted corporate confidence.

Companies raised €22.6 billion via 86 IPOs during the first three months of the year, according to PwC. This was in stark contrast to the first quarter of 2020, where only 16 IPOs raised €1.2 billion, as the Covid-19 pandemic significantly impacted activity.

The London Stock Exchange remained the leading European exchange for IPOs, with 21 transactions raising over £7.3 billion in total. The two most high profile IPOs were Deliveroo and Dr Martens both of which raised £1.5 billion and were among the top five transactions in Europe.

The London exchange also led the rankings for further offerings, with €10.3 billion raised from 107 transactions, ahead of Deutsche Borse (€6.7 billion from 27 FOs) and Nasdaq Nordic – Copenhagen (over €6.4 billion from five FOs).

Amsterdam’s Euronext exchange also gained significant momentum as the second most active exchange for IPOs, with €4.7 billion raised from four IPOs, primarily driven by the offering of InPost SA, which raised €3.2 billion alone.

There was also a marked increase in IPO activity from private equity houses looking to exit, supported by strong market conditions and attractive valuations.

Richard Spilsbury, capital markets partner at PwC UK, said: “We have seen a significant deal flow in Europe across a broad range of sectors from technology and telecoms to consumer products and industrials.”

However, what stands out in particular is the flurry of European tech, online and e-commerce new listings, he said.

“This has largely been driven by increased investor appetite for digital companies that have benefited from the lockdowns and a broader shift towards online by consumers and companies, as well as increasing focus on sustainable businesses strategies,” Spilsbury added.


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Published: June 1, 2021
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