Business Times

Singer Finance IPO draws Rs 54 bln, oversubscribed by 135 times

Singer Finance (Lanka) Ltd Initial Public Offering (IPO) last week was oversubscribed by over 135 times, raising Rs 54 billion in the process – far above the Rs 400 million it had sought. “This is a new record for an IPO in Sri Lanka,” said NDB Investment Bank Ltd (NDBIB), the Managers and Financial Advisors to the IPO in a press release last week.

The shares allocated for the public recorded an enormous oversubscription of 149.4 times whilst the allocation for Singer employees recorded an oversubscription of 3.3 times, it said. Singer Finance IPO has more than doubled the previous record for the highest oversubscription in an IPO at the Colombo Stock Exchange which was claimed by ODEL PLC for its oversubscription levels of 63.8 times, the statement said.

The Singer Finance IPO offering 26,666,667 shares at Rs. 15 per share attracted 21,739 valid applications raising approximately Rs. 54 billion. The quantum of funds raised is believed to be only second to the IPO of Dialog Axiata PLC, another landmark transaction carried out by NDBIB in 2005, which raised approximately Rs. 56 billion.

Commenting on the final outcome of the IPO, Singer Finance CEO, Shantha Wijeweera said “The response by the public has been overwhelming and shows us that people have faith in us and the Singer brand. Further, through this basis of allotment the company has been able to fully satisfy over 42% of total applicants in the IPO”.

Darshan Perera, CEO of NDBIB noted that “the level of oversubscription is highly commendable and will be challenged in the coming months with the numerous IPOs in the pipeline. One of our biggest tasks was to give a fair allocation of shares to both the retailers and high net worth individuals, something we, together with the Board of Singer Finance, are pleased to have accomplished.”

The funds raised via this IPO will be utilized by the company to expand their lending portfolio and expand its branch network. The newest Singer Finance outlet was opened in Anuradhapura recently with many more outlets scheduled to be opened in the North and East regions of the country.

Q&E associates with Singer Finance for record-breaking IPO
Q&E, one of the country’s largest independent advertising company, developed and executed a 360 degree campaign for the Initial Public Offering (IPO) of Singer Finance, Q&E that focused on delivering high initial investor interest and sustained demand – resulting in a share issue that was oversubscribed by more than 100 times on opening day.

Singer Group CEO Asoka Peiris noted that “Q&E immediately grasped the strength of the Singer brand and devised a campaign thought and media plan that spoke directly to investors looking for enduring value.” Instead of spending vast sums of money on an unfocused communications plan, the advertising campaign leveraged the Singer brand in a cost-effective manner to set a new benchmark of excellence in the financial markets, the agency said in a press release.

Q&E CEO, Dilrukshi Wijeyekoon stressed that "a clear message and strategic media buying can minimize advertising expenditures while still getting a big bang."

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