Seven companies made their debut on the ASX this week, and in a surprise showing, it was one cloud-based property platform that delivered the biggest windfall. In the US, the majority of floats hit their straps and jumped on debut, with as much as US$6.6 billion in fresh capital raised for companies to hit the boards of the NYSE and Nasdaq.
New ASX listings
After wrapping up its oversubscribed IPO, Perth-based gold and base metals explorer Western Mines Group (ASX: WMG) landed on the ASX amid a muted reception. The junior explorer raised $5.5 million by issuing 27.5 million shares to fund exploration across its portfolio of eight projects throughout Western Australia. The stock traded slightly down in its first days of listing.
Next to toe the line was BCAL Diagnostics (ASX: BCAL), with the biotechnology firm working on a blood lipid test that it hopes may one day be used for the screening, diagnosis and treatment of breast cancer. The stock came to market with a valuation of approximately $50 million, however, with many existing shares not in escrow, it appears some early shareholders took their profits. Amid large trading volumes, the stock shed 16% from its IPO price of $0.25 per share, although was at one stage on Friday down 20%.
One of the surprise packets for the week was the listing from Openn Negotiation (ASX: OPN), which largely went under the radar. A provider of real estate platform software, Openn soared approximately 60% on debut, and ended the week 50% higher than its IPO price. The cloud-based platform has been used for property sales to the value of $2 billion and helps real estate agents manage auctions. The company plans to use IPO funds to broaden its use across the ANZ region, while plans to enter the US are on the horizon.
It was a volatile first week of trading for Gefen International (ASX: GFN), an Israeli fintech platform that builds omnichannel digital hubs to connect agents, customers, and carriers. Shares in the company sagged heavily on debut, down 20% amid delays making it to the boards of the ASX, although those losses were pared throughout the remainder of the week.
The initial public offerings of life insurance provider NobleOak (ASX: NOL) and gold minerals explorer Victory Goldfields (ASX: 1VG) were largely uneventful affairs, however, the latter did scratch out a modest rise on debut
Rounding out the week’s debutants was Western Gold Resources (ASX: WGR), with the gold minerals explorer trading flat on debut after raising $7 million for its advanced-exploration Wiluna West Gold Project, which it hopes to move to production.
New US listings
AbSci (NASDAQ: ABSI) priced its initial public offering of 12.5 million shares at US$16 a piece earlier in the week. The synthetic biology company, which works with proteins as therapeutics, leapt almost 35% on its first day of trading on Thursday evening as support came flocking in.
Meanwhile, CW Biologics (NASDAQ: HCWB), a pre-clinical biotech firm working on novel immunotherapies to lengthen health span, priced its own IPO of 7 million shares at US$8 per share. The offer fell flat with prospective investors, sinking sharply to as low as US$4.27 at one stage, and still down around 40% at the time of writing.
Wednesday was a big day for a swathe of IPO debutants, with five listings taking place. Tech businesses CS Disco (NYSE: LAW) and Kaltura (NASDAQ: KLTR) were arguably the most impressive of the bunch, with each looking to disrupt their respective sectors.
In the case of CS Disco, the cloud-based software firm working in the legal sector gained around 30% on listing, with its premise as a centralised and secure solution for legal data resonating with shareholders. Kaltura gained 20% on its first day of trading, with the video technology platform finding support in an environment that has seen a greater uptake of working from home.
Elsewhere, Brazilian cloud-based commerce platform VTEX (NYSE: VTEX) also had a positive debut, finishing day one about 17% higher, and matching that on day two. That was better than the 13% gain chalked up by HR software provider Paycor (NASDAQ: PYCR), which helps SMEs with payroll and tax obligations. Recreational and commercial catamaran boat-maker Twin Vee PowerCats (NASDAQ: VEEE) had a bright opening day, but fell sharply in its follow-up session by more than 23%.
The week’s biggest listing, Ryan Specialty Group (NYSE: RYAN), which provides insurance products to brokers, agents and carriers, rose 17% after completing its US$1.34 billion IPO. That opening day pop was enough to give the company a valuation of approximately US$7 billion.
Elsewhere, online education company Instructure Holdings (NYSE: INST) advanced 4.9% after raising US$250 million, although that was a far cry short of where it opened the day. Beverage company Zevia (NYSE: ZVIA) eased 2.5%, while similarly-named software firm Zenvia (NASDAQ: ZENV) plummeted nearly 22%. Finally, database software platform Couchbase (NASDAQ: BASE), which services the likes of Avis and Domino’s, had a blistering start to public trading, up 26.7%.
The last of this week’s new listings will take place tonight including online content marketing platform Outbrain (NASDAQ: OB), and franchise fitness roll-up brand Xponential Fitness (NYSE: XPOF).
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