Central Retail plans to raise up to $2.7b in Thailand’s biggest IPO

Photo: Central Retail

Thailand’s largest retailer, Central Retail Corporation, plans to raise up to 81.1 billion baht ($2.7 billion) in an initial public offer (IPO), the company said in a filing on Thursday, in what would be the country’s largest IPO.

Central Retail, part of the billionaire Chirativat family’s Central Group, set an IPO price range at between 40 and 48 baht per share and will sell up to 22.1% of the company’s stock or 1.69 billion shares with an overallotment option of 169 million shares.

Subscription for investors will begin on Feb. 6.

Central Retail’s plans to go public, first announced in July, would overtake the country’s largest listing, BTS Rail Mass Transit Growth Fund, which raised 62 billion baht in 2013.

Funds raised will be used to expand its domestic and international businesses and to pay off debt, the company said.

There has been renewed investor interest in the Thai capital’s markets, led by first-time share sales from billionaire families and conglomerate spin-offs.

Earlier this year, the hospitality firm of billionaire Charoen Sirivadhanabhakdi, Asset World Corp Pcl, raised 48 billion baht.

The country’s largest industrial conglomerate, Siam Cement Group Pcl, has announced plans to list its packaging unit next year and the state energy firm PTT Pcl is in the process of filing for an IPO for its retail arm, PTT Oil and Retail.

As part of its listing plans, the parent company, Central Group, will delist its retail subsidiary, Robinson Pcl, where it holds a majority stake, and offer a share swap to Robinson’s existing shareholders with no cash alternatives.

The share swap with Robinson will start on Jan. 27.

Central Retail, which has 2,000 stores in Thailand, booked 106 billion baht ($3.46 billion) in revenue in the 6 months ending in June. It will have a dividend policy of at least 40% of net profit.

Some 43% of revenue came from its food business, 34% from fashion and the remainder from hardware.

Phatra Securities and Bualuang Securities Public have been hired as financial advisers.

Reuters

Singapore Reporter/s

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Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

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Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.