Bank of China

Hong Long soars 23.8pc in Year of the Pig's first listing

PUBLISHED : Friday, 23 February, 2007, 12:00am
UPDATED : Friday, 23 February, 2007, 12:00am

Shares in mainland developer Hong Long Holdings gained 23.89 per cent on their trading debut while China Huiyuan Juice Group shares are expected to jump more than 50 per cent today as they begin trade, reflecting investors' bullishness towards new listings after the Lunar New Year holiday.

Guangdong province-based Hong Long closed at HK$2.23 yesterday against an initial public offering price of HK$1.80.

The stock, the first listing in the Year of the Pig, gained as much as 34 per cent during the day.

Hong Long raised HK$450 million by selling 250 million new shares to fund land acquisitions in the mainland.

'After the shares rose by 30 per cent on its first trading day, its discount to net asset value was narrowed from as much as 61 per cent to 25 per cent, still a reasonable level and in line with other mainland property stocks,' said one fund manager involved in the share sale.

However, he said investor sentiment on the mainland property sector was still mixed due to possible further government measures to slow growth.

'We expect greater volatility in the property sector over the next few months, as additional measures are introduced, countered by technical support,' Merrill Lynch analysts wrote in a recent research report.

Shares in Huiyuan, the mainland's top juice maker, traded at HK$9.40 in the grey market yesterday, up 57 per cent from the offer price of HK$6. Its shares will list today.

Huiyuan's strong gain came after the retail tranche of its offering was about 937 times oversubscribed.

The company sold 400 million shares to raise HK$2.4 billion to fund expansion of production facilities and distribution networks.

Meanwhile, Malaysian timber firm Samling Global today starts selling 105 million shares, or 10 per cent of the shares available in its offer, to retail investors at HK$2.08 each.

The company, which may raise up to HK$2.2 billion from the deal, plans to use HK$644 million for increasing production capacity and HK$560 million for the expansion of its product distribution downstream business.