Aster IPO may be litmus test for Gulf-based Indian cos

KOCHI: Several prospective initial public issuers view Aster DM Healthcare initial public issue (IPO) as a litmus test for them as they also operate like Aster with business interests in India as well as Middle East, especially GCC.

Though the names of Kalyan Jewellery and a few others are being rumoured around as the next in the line-up for IPOs, the volatile market conditions and the less than expected response to the Aster IPO on the first day may prompt them to have more serious thoughts on the size and timing of their public offers.

Nonetheless, there is no official confirmation yet with regard to these IPOs or more precisely, none has so far filed the official papers for IPO.

The Aster DM Healthcare IPO opened today (February 12, 2018) and will remain open until February 15. The equity shares with a face value of Rs10 are offered at a price band of Rs180-Rs190.

Kotak Mahindra Capital Company, Axis Capital and Goldman Sachs (India) Securities are the global coordinators and book running lead managers to the offer and ICICI Securities, JM Financial and YES Securities are the book running lead managers to the offer, according to an official statement from the company.

On Friday last, the company raised Rs294 crore from its anchor investors. The company aims to raise about Rs980 crore from the public offering.

The risk factors listed in the Aster DM Healthcare prospectus help investors to get a feel of the nature of business operations being carried out in GCC countries by the Indian companies. Apart from Kalyan, Joyalukkas had earlier planned an IPO but was later put on hold due to unfavourable market conditions, according to sources.

Malabar Gold and Diamonds is said to be in a consolidation phase and has announced ambitious network expansion plans in a recent press conference held in Kottayam. All these entities are not only household names in India but GCC as well, but have proved their business acumen through their decades-old operations in India and overseas.

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