Swedish buyout group EQT plans €500m IPO, listing in Stockholm

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Updated: 03.09.2019
  • Private equity firm backed by the Wallenberg family to sell fifth of shares to support growth
  • EQT posted €295m revenue and €109m profit for six months to 30th June
  • No specific time frame for IPO set, expects to list on Nasdaq Stockholm

Swedish private equity firm EQT intends to sell 20% of its shares and raise around €500m in proceeds in an initial public offering.

The firm has ambitious plans to grow and develop its successful business model and take advantage of new and emerging opportunities.

In a statement issued on Monday, EQT confirmed that it would list on the Nasdaq in Stockholm in the near future but did not set out a documented roadmap.

The company is set to hold a two-week-long talk with analysts and pitch to investors with a management roadshow before going public.

Flotations for buyout groups are a rare occurrence and EQT, which has grown to become one of the largest in Europe, would be the first in years to do so.

Chief executive Christian Sinding said that, since being founded in 1994, EQT had gone from strength to strength as a private company but to sustain growth it now needed its “own balance sheet.”

EQT’s finances impressed analysts during the latest six-month period ending 30th June with €295m revenues and €140m earnings before EBITDA, helping to drive an overall profit of €109m.

It also holds assets under management worth €40bn and has raised around €62bn in capital during the last 25 years.

EQT is on more than a stable footing as it prepares for an IPO, which is designed to support growth and expansion across the board.

The company noted a strong desire to invest in more talent in key growth areas such as Asia and North America following the sale.

Talk about an IPO first surfaced in early 2019 when Mr Sinding admitted that a listing could take place amid concerns about falling share prices and a bear market.

On Monday, Mr Sinding said there has been a “fairly long bull cycle” but confirmed its IPO plans were not directly related to a potential change in this cycle.

When EQT eventually goes public, the general populace in Sweden and global institutional investors will be permitted to buy shares. The company confirmed that it is now working with SEB and JP Morgan, who will act as joint book-runners and global coordinators for the offering. Goldman Sachs, UBS, Merrill Lynch and BNP Paribas are also involved.

In other IPO news, Bloomberg reported on Monday that Chinese gay dating app Blued could list on a stock exchange in the United States next year after outlining plans to raise $200m, which would increase the company’s value to around $1bn.

The service, founded seven years ago, has 40 million users and earns revenue via live stream content and matchmaking software.