New Zealand’s investment banks are clambering to get a slice of the Napier Port IPO action amid a long drought for new equity offers. The port’s owner, Hawke’s Bay Regional Council, has invited broking teams to Napier to pitch for the opportunity to float the port, following a decision to go ahead with a partial sell down of its shares to fund the port’s growth. Source: New Zealand Herald
The council is understood to have sent a request for proposal to the main players including Deutsche Craigs, FNZC, Goldman Sachs, and Macquarie Capital, according to a report in the AFR.
A tight race looms for what is expected to be a NZ $200 million IPO if the council offloads up to 45% of its stake in the port.
Which firms get the nod may come down to local presence given the port’s location in a region that boasts plenty of wealthy investors.
FNZC, which has a small office in Havelock North, has already done some recent work for the council, including a joint role in allocating some NZ$50m of funds left over from the aborted Ruataniwha Water Storage Scheme (RWSS) project in Central Hawke’s Bay.
Forsyth Barr is also close to the action with offices in Napier and Hastings, while Craigs recently announced it is establishing an office in Havelock.
There is likely to be healthy interest from investors both in New Zealand and Australia given the lack of new sharemarket listings notwithstanding volatile global markets at the moment.
Napier Port reported a record profit of NZ$17.6m for the year to September, up from NZ$16.7m a year earlier, with revenue of NZ$91.7m up from NZ$87.7m.
The port handled a record 5.1 million tonnes of cargo, with log exports lifting 35% to a record 2.2 million tonnes. A successful IPO could tempt other councils to look closer at their investment portfolios with some assets potentially fitting the bill for a similar mixed ownership model.