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  • Sunday, 14 July 2024
London Leads European Share Sales Despite IPO Slowdown

London Leads European Share Sales Despite IPO Slowdown

London maintains its position as Europe's primary destination for sales of shares in listed companies, with secondary deals surpassing the absence of UK initial public offerings (IPOs). Data compiled by Bloomberg reveals a significant increase in share offerings in London, totaling $11.3 billion so far in 2024, marking a nearly 24% rise from the previous year.


Outpacing European Competitors


Despite the lack of IPO activity, London's share sales volume significantly exceeds that of other European exchanges. Dru Danford, head of investment banking at Liberum, underscores London's outperformance compared to European competitors like Amsterdam and Frankfurt.


Major Sell-Downs Drive Activity


Two major sell-downs of existing stakes have notably contributed to London's share sale tally in 2024. GSK Plc's exit from Haleon Plc and the consortium of former owners of Refinitiv's sell-down of their stake in LSEG have been prominent transactions.


High Activity Level and Diverse Participation


London has witnessed a higher number of active companies engaging in share sales compared to other European exchanges. More than 60 firms have been involved in share sales in London this year, highlighting the market's robustness.


London's Underappreciated Market Strength


Julia Hoggett, CEO of the LSE, emphasizes the strength of London's capital market, debunking perceptions that undermine its significance. She highlights London's ranking as the fifth-largest exchange globally by total capital raised year-to-date.


IPO Scene Lags Behind


Despite its dominance in secondary share offerings, London's IPO scene has been subdued, accounting for only 2% of the market for new offerings this month. However, there are promising signs of potential IPOs, including reports of Shein's anticipated London offering.


Market Dynamics and Competitor Landscape


London's stock exchange remains the busiest in Europe by daily value traded, although the market capitalization of primary listings in Paris now surpasses London. Some companies have shifted their main listings from London to the US in pursuit of higher valuations.


Future Outlook


While London faces competition from New York, its resilience and continued activity in share sales underscore its enduring significance in the global financial landscape.

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