IPOs hit four-year high

The number of ASX listings increased significantly in 2015, according to new research by Deloitte.

Deloitte’s 2016 IPO report tallied 97 listings in 2015 – up 33 per cent on the 12 months prior, and the highest figure in four years.

The average market capitalisation of IPOs dropped 32 per cent to $181 million in 2015, down from $354 million the previous year.

However, the overall number of listings with market capitalisation over $75 million has increased dramatically from four in 2012 to 53 in 2015, according to the study.

Over that same period, the number of IPOs have increased, moving from 51 in 2012 to 97 in 2015.

“The numbers certainly tell the story,” Deloitte’s head of transaction services, Ian Turner, said.

Despite volatility in China and falling commodity prices, IPOs have “remained stock market darlings” in 2015.

“From the list of the top-performing IPOs for the year, the majority are small and mid-cap growth stocks, largely in the technology and related sectors, which raised less than $50 million of capital,” he continued.

Tapan Verma, Deloitte director of IPO transaction services, said the overall results were far more positive than market sentiment reflects.

“Had you invested in every private equity-backed float from the start of 2013, and including some of the poorer performers, you would today be sitting on a portfolio return of 48 per cent. The results really speak for themselves,” he said.

The outlook over the next two years is positive, with technology, financial services and consumer businesses expected to continue to drive IPO markets, according to Mr Verma.

“The window for listings certainly remains open, although market volatility is expected to impact IPO valuations in the short term and result in more trade sale and dual-track M&A processes for some IPO candidates,” he said.

[Related: Outlook strong for Aussie M&A]

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