World stock markets brace for a flurry of major flotations
After Facebook’s anticlimactic $16bn (£10bn) listing earlier this year and a quiet summer, you could be forgiven for thinking the IPO market is dead. But if September so far is anything to go by, the window could be about to open once more.
A flurry of filings are gathering pace worldwide, creating opportunities for lawyers to tussle for the top spots. Japan Airlines, which is set to list on the Tokyo Stock Exchange for $8.5bn on 19 September, is one example, with Simpson Thacher & Bartlett and Sullivan & Cromwell set to advise.
Meanwhile, Davis Polk & Wardwell and Shearman & Sterling are acting for Banco Santander as it gears up to list its Mexican subsidiary in Mexico and New York, aiming to raise an estimated $4.3bn. Davis Polk corporate partner Nicholas Kronfeld is working with two Shearman & Sterling partners on the deal - Russell Sacks in New York and DC-based tax specialist Don Lonczak.
Back in Europe, while one London partner concedes that the IPO pipeline is “nowhere near as robust as in previous years”, there are plenty of reasons to be cheerful as a wave of Russian household names set their sights on the City.
MegaFon’s planned IPO is tipped to reach $4bn later this month and is keeping both Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton and Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer busy. Sberbank is also limbering up to finally issue its estimated $5bn SPO in London.
Cleary has again won the mandate to act as lead adviser on the deal, with Linklaters drafted in to act for the banks. And there may be many more similar listings soon.