Spanish airport operator Aena has launched its IPO at €58 a share, said to be Europe’s biggest since 2011, with the market valuing the company at €8.7bn ahead of its stock listing.
The IPO is backed by speculative demand among investors who have lapped it up in the hopes of strong economic recovery in Spain.
Aena’s earlier attempts at taking out an IPO were stalled in October last year over demands for more transparency, reports Reuters.
The publication further adds that the original price range of the offering was pegged between €43 and €55 a share, which spiked on the back of falling oil prices, and brighter prospects for tourism and Spain’s economy.
As the country heads into an election year, the Spanish Government has come around to sell 44.6% stake in Aena as per sources, which further add that the final stake could be as high as 49%.
In addition, Aena posted its nine-month results last month, where core earnings rose 15.5% to €1.46bn, boosted by high traffic figures.
Also earlier, the government committed 21% of Aena’s shares to three investors, London-based hedge fund TCI, Spanish fund Grupo Alba and infrastructure group Ferrovial. But the Financial Times reports good company results and improving economy drove the IPO price far higher. So far, only TCI is willing to pay at the current price.
The majority of the offering is now expected to go to institutional investors with a small portion dedicated for retail investors in Spain.
Spain was the world’s third most-visited country last year, with 65 million visitors, adds Reuters.
Image: Barcelona Airport, Terminal B. Photo: courtsey of Grobuonis via Wikipedia.