Acoustic sees full retail take-up

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 03 August, 2005, 12:00am
UPDATED : Wednesday, 03 August, 2005, 12:00am

The retail tranche of AAC Acoustic Technologies' initial public offering has been fully covered despite modest investor response to recent new offerings, sources said.

But compared with the retail side, the mobile handset speaker maker's flotation appeared more enticing to institutional investors, with the institutional tranche at least two to three times covered, sources said.

'We are happy with the retail response as the retail portions of some previous offerings have not managed to get fully subscribed,' sources close to the deal said.

Leading up to AAC Acoustic's, new offerings, such as shipping firm China Cosco Holdings and mainland property developer R & F Properties, failed to arouse investor interest, with both retail tranches undersubscribed.

AAC Acoustic, aiming to tap the market for up to $724.3 million, will price the offering today, with an indicative range of $2.38 to $2.82, ahead of the listing on Tuesday. CSFB is the listing sponsor.

In stark contrast to AAC Acoustic, Hong Kong Economic Times Holdings (HKET) announced yesterday that the retail tranche of its offering was 352.5 times covered and the institutional tranche was significantly oversubscribed.

HKET received 123 applications from its staff, subscribing for a total of 2.94 million shares. An oversubscription of more than 100 times automatically triggers an increase in shares reserved for retail investors to 50 per cent of the total offered, from the initial 10 per cent.

HKET priced its flotation at the high end of the indicative range of $1.43 to $1.70, raising $176.8 million for a 10.9 times fully diluted historical price-earnings ratio. The publisher begins trading today.