LONDON BRIEFING: Oxford Nanopore has Oracle as investor for London IPO

(Alliance News) - London's IPO market received another boost on Thursday, as IP Group investee ...

Alliance News 16 September, 2021 | 8:22AM
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(Alliance News) - London's IPO market received another boost on Thursday, as IP Group investee Oxford Nanopore confirmed plans to float with a prominent industry backer.

FTSE 250-listed IP Group has a 14% stake in the life sciences company.

Admission is expected in early October. Oxford Nanopore is to raise GBP300 million. Existing shareholders also will sell stock.

It said on Thursday it has secured a cornerstone investment of GBP150 million from US database software firm Oracle, with which it also has signed a collaboration agreement.

Oxford Nanopore announced its intention to float earlier in September.

"We believe Oxford Nanopore is ideally suited to both disrupt existing markets and create entirely new ones. An IPO will be a step on the journey to make our vision a reality, supporting our ambitious growth plans and enhancing our ability to innovate and grow," Chief Executive Gordon Sanghera said at the time.

The IPO would represent a big win for the London Main Market. Biotechnology firms have previously listed on the junior AIM market or have looked to make a mark on the Nasdaq in the US.

Vaccitech, which like Oxford Nanopore is a University of Oxford spin-out, opted to overlook London markets entirely to list on the Nasdaq back in April. AIM-listed life science research tools firm Abcam is also Nasdaq-listed.

IP Group shares were up 1.3% early Thursday.

Here is what you need to know at the London market open:

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MARKETS

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FTSE 100: up 0.4% at 7,044.76

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Hang Seng: down 1.9% at 24,568.35

Nikkei 225: closed down 0.6% at 30,323.34

DJIA: closed up 236.82 points, or 0.7%, at 34,814.39

S&P 500: closed up 37.65 points, or 0.9%, at 4,480.70

Nasdaq Composite: closed up 123.77 points, or 0.8%, at 15,161.53

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EUR: down at USD1.1795 (USD1.1817)

GBP: down at USD1.3816 (USD1.3840)

USD: flat at JPY109.35 (JPY109.38)

Gold: down at USD1,785.94 per ounce (USD1,792.85)

Oil (Brent): down at USD75.36 a barrel (USD75.75)

(changes since previous London equities close)

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ECONOMICS AND GENERAL

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Thursday's Key Economic Events still to come

1100 CEST EU foreign trade

0830 EDT US retail sales

0830 EDT US jobless claims

1000 EDT US manufacturing & trade

1030 EDT US EIA weekly natural gas storage report

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UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson is expected to continue his ministerial shake-up as he reshapes the junior ranks following an overhaul of some of the Cabinet's top positions. The prime minister shuffled his frontbench late into Wednesday evening in a day that saw Liz Truss appointed the first woman Conservative foreign secretary, Dominic Raab demoted, and Gavin Williamson sacked. Despite wielding the axe over a number of key Cabinet roles, Johnson continued the firing as he reshaped his junior ministerial set-up, with longstanding schools minister Nick Gibb the most prominent figure to be shown the door. Cabinet changes mean that two of the great offices of state are now held by women after Truss was promoted from international trade secretary and Priti Patel kept her role of Home Secretary despite speculation she would be sacked. Rishi Sunak, who occupies the other most esteemed office, continues as chancellor. Raab was demoted to Justice Secretary but handed the consolation prize of Deputy Prime Minister, formalising a role he undertook when Johnson was in hospital with Covid-19 last year. The change meant former Lord Chancellor Robert Buckland was also sacked, along with Robert Jenrick, who was replaced as Housing Secretary by Michael Gove. Gove has been handed powers well-beyond those enjoyed by his predecessor after he was entrusted by the prime minister with the added responsibility for driving his 'levelling up' reform agenda while maintaining his role in protecting the Union.

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BROKER RATING CHANGES

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DEUTSCHE BANK CUTS UNILEVER TO 'HOLD' (BUY) - PRICE TARGET 4,600 (4,800) PENCE

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EXANE BNP RAISES STANDARD CHARTERED TO 'NEUTRAL' (UNDERPERFORM)

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COMPANIES - FTSE 100

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Equipment rental firm Ashtead tipped its full-year results to be "ahead of its earlier expectations". In the first quarter to July 31, revenue rose 21% year-on-year to USD1.85 billion from USD1.51 billion. Rental revenue alone rose 22% to USD1.67 billion from USD1.35 billion a year earlier. Pretax profit surged 74% to USD415.8 million from USD240.6 million. Two years earlier, so prior to the onset of the pandemic, Ashtead's first quarter pretax profit amounted to USD304.7 million, on revenue of USD1.28 billion. Rental revenue back then amounted to USD1.16 billion. Looking to the full-year, Ashtead raised group rental revenue guidance. It now expects rental revenue climb of 13% to 16%, up markedly from the previous growth of 6% to 9%.

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COMPANIES - FTSE 250

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Contracts-for-difference trading provider IG Group reported revenue of GBP227.5 million in its financial first quarter, the three months ended August 31. It said adjusted net trading revenue was GBP221.7 million, in line with expectations. IG said it saw "some moderation" in the pace of new client acquisition compared to the elevated levels of financial 2021, onboarding 27,500 new clients in the recent quarter.

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Rival online trading firm CMC Markets said it paid AUD25 million, about GBP13 million, to buy the share investing client base of Australia & New Zealand Banking Group. The deal brings 500,000 ANZ share investing clients with AUD45 billion in assets onto the CMC platform. The UK company previously had serviced these clients via a white-label technology deal with ANZ, in place since 2018.

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COMPANIES - MAIN MARKET AND AIM

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Ryanair is targetting annual traffic of 225 million passengers by March 2026, up from its previous target of 220 million and the 149 million it carried before the Covid-19 pandemic. It has lifted its five-year traffic growth forecast to 50% from 33% previously. Ryanair also plans to take delivery of 210 Boeing 737 "gamechanger" aircraft over the next five years. "These aircraft will deliver industry lowest costs, reduced emissions, and will enable Ryanair accelerate its post-Covid growth, as opportunities open up at primary and secondary airports all over Europe, particularly where legacy carriers have failed or reduced fleet sizes as a result of Covid and state aid," Ryanair added. Ryanair's annual general meeting will be held on Thursday. It said that, based on proxy votes it has received, all resolutions have been passed.

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THG, which trades as The Hut Group, left annual guidance unchanged after posting sharp first-half revenue growth. In the six months to June 30, revenue rose 42% to GBP958.8 million from GBP675.7 million a year earlier. Revenue was 93% higher than it was two years prior. However, its pretax loss stretched to GBP81.3 million from GBP49.9 million a year earlier. THG booked a loss from the revaluation of an option with SB Management, a a subsidiary of new partner SoftBank Group. This non-cash loss amounted to GBP38.1 million. Back in May, THG said it secured a financial and trading partnership with SBM, under which both parties will explore potential commercial arrangements between each other. The collaboration comprises a USD730 million subscription by SBM in THG shares as well as an option to subscribe for a 20% interest in THG Ingenuity, which is worth USD1.6 billion, implying an enterprise value of USD6.3 billion. THG said on Thursday that SBM will exercise this option ahead of schedule. The company also said it intends to separate out THG Beauty and float it in 2022. THG itself listed a year ago, raising GBP920 million at 500 pence per share. Quoted at 619.50p early Thursday, down 3.0%, shares are now 24% higher than the IPO price.

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COMPANIES - GLOBAL

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Canadian Pacific Railway said it has reached an agreement to buy US freight company Kansas City Southern Railway, bringing to an end a bidding war with competitor Canadian National Railway. Canadian Pacific said in a statement that it plans to buy KCS for approximately USD27 billion and take on its USD3.8 billion debt. The boards of directors of both companies have agreed to the deal. The two Canadian companies were locked in a battle to be the first North American rail company to connect the ports and factories of Mexico, the US and Canada by rail.

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Thursday's Shareholder Meetings

Ashtead Group PLC - AGM

Charles Stanley Group PLC - GM re takeover by Raymond James

Eco Animal Health Group PLC - AGM

International Personal Finance PLC - GM re delisting from Warsaw Stock Exchange

Real Estate Credit Investments Ltd - AGM

ReNeuron Group PLC - AGM

Ryanair Holdings PLC - AGM

SysGroup PLC - AGM

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By Tom Waite; thomaslwaite@alliancenews.com

Copyright 2021 Alliance News Limited. All Rights Reserved.

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Securities Mentioned in Article

Security Name Price Change (%) Morningstar
Rating
CMC Markets PLC 279.00 GBX 2.76 -
IG Group Holdings PLC 818.00 GBX 1.30 -
Standard Chartered PLC 492.50 GBX 1.46
IP Group PLC 129.20 GBX 1.57 -
THG PLC Ordinary Share 289.40 GBX -5.36 -
Unilever PLC 3,853.50 GBX -0.68
Oracle Corp 95.33 USD 0.05

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