New issues from companies in the consumer and technology sectors helped lead a broad-based improvement in the second quarter market for initial public offerings in Canada, the quarterly PwC survey of Canadian equity markets shows.
More than $827 million in new equity was raised from eight issues across all Canadian exchanges in the second quarter, the PwC survey reported, including six IPOs on the TSX with a value of more than $823 million. The total was off from the $2.1 billion raised in seven IPOs in the same quarter last year but up from the $624 million from five new issues in the first quarter of 2015.
Total proceeds for the first half of 2015 reached more than $1.4 billion (13 new issues) compared to $2.1 billion from nine IPOs in the comparable period of 2014.
Two IPOs from Canadian companies made headlines during the quarter but were not included in the survey. DAVIDsTEA Inc. ($97 million) and XBiotech Inc. ($76 million) were floated exclusively on the NASDAQ exchange in the U.S. The PwC survey covers activity on Canadian markets.
The range of sectors producing new issues in the first half of 2015 gives the market a welcome stability, says Dean Braunsteiner, PwC national IPO leader.
“Issues like Shopify and Stingray Digital Group certainly attracted a lot of attention in the last quarter,” says Braunsteiner, “and a surge of activity from the tech sector has been anticipated for some time. But the market for all new issues – including the ones we see coming in the next quarter – shows a balance among sectors that responds to investor demand for mature companies.”
In the first half of the year, new issues came to market from the energy, financial, consumer products, pharmaceutical, mining, communications and technology sectors.
A number of developments from the first half of 2015 are noteworthy, Braunsteiner says. He points to the successful offering of special-purpose investment companies focused on start-ups as a significant addition to the financing options for new enterprises. The early signs of private equity firms bringing companies to the public equity market is also a trend to watch, he says. And the IPO of tech companies that used to be bought by larger U.S. tech firms before they could go public may yet encourage more mid-stage firms in that sector to look at the IPO market.
PwC has conducted its survey of the IPO market in Canada for more than 10 years. The reports are issued on a quarterly basis to provide information to the corporate sector, investors, the media and others that will help them put the market into better perspective. For the purposes of the survey, investment vehicles such as structured products are not considered IPOs because they do not represent new equity raised for operating companies.