Indonesia has for the first time surpassed Singapore in terms of both volume and value of initial public offerings (IPOs) in Southeast Asia, according to a report by Duff & Phelps. Public listings in Singapore hit a five-year low with 15 companies raising a total of about $523 million in 2018, while Indonesia recorded a new high by raising a total of $1.1 billion from 57 listings during the year. Going public is one of the indicators of the success of a startup or a private company, and Singapore was among the most preferred destinations for listings in Southeast Asia (SEA) until last year. 2018, however, bucked the trend, and Singapore is seen to be catching up with other regional markets like Indonesia, or its long-standing competitor, Hong Kong, the report said. In 2017, the city-state witnessed 19 IPOs raising a total of $3.7 billion, driven by the sizeable listing of Netlink Trust. On the other hand, Indonesia raised $625 million from 26 new listings in 2017. Meanwhile, IPO listings in Malaysia, too, dropped in 2018 with $150 million raised in total across 22 listings, compared to $1.64 billion raised from 14 listings in 2017. Among the top IPO deals recorded in 2018 in the region was the public listing of Singapore’s Sasseur Real Estate Investment Trust (Sasseur Reit). The IPO was launched in March 2018 and priced at S$0.80 per unit, comprising 252.8 million placement units, and a public tranche of 13.8 million units. The company raised a total of $300 million through the offering. Of the top ten slots in terms of total capital raised, eight were occupied by Indonesian companies, including PT Bank Brisyariah Tbk, PT Medikaloka Hermina Tbk, PT Map Aktif Adiperkasa Tbk, PT Indonesia KendaraanTerminal Tbk, PT Surya Pertiwi Tbk, MNC Studios International Tbk, Pollux Properti Indonesia Tbk, and PT Bank Tabungan Pensiunan Nasional Syariah Tbk. Indonesian capital markets bounced back in 2016 and 2017 after the lows of 2015. The country was once considered an unchartered market shunned by most investors, whose investment mandate was capital preservation and/or dividend-focus, due to high market volatility risks, and potential currency exchange risks. The Duff & Phelps report also noted that the real estate sector accounted for the majority of the capital raised in 2018. Apart from Sasseur Reit’s IPO listing, other real estate-themed IPO debutants include SLB Development and PropNex Ltd on SGX. The report also noted that the banking, financial services, and insurance (BFSI) sector was the largest contributor to capital raises via IPOs. Topping the list was PT Bank Brisyariah Tbk, which raised $96 million this year. Markets Duff & Phelps noted that for the Singapore market, there are liquidity issues with many companies preferring to list in Hong Kong due to its proximity to China. The report lauded some of the efforts by the Singapore Exchange in successfully approving dual-class share (DCS) structures in a bid to boost liquidity in the local markets. However, in order to improve the attractiveness of Singapore as a key market for public listings, SGX is encouraged to introduce more innovative products and services which appeal to local and foreign investors. For Indonesia, DP is seeing more upcoming technology listings including the potential listing of Traveloka. There were also discussions that Indonesia is trying to set up a technology-focused securities exchange to target the likes of Go-Jek, Traveloka, Bukalapak, and Tokopedia. However, DEALSTREETASIA could not independently confirm the same. In 2019 and beyond, technology listings are likely to form the majority of IPOs and overtake the BFSI sector, the report added.
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