Keeping score: BRIC flotations

Initial public offerings (IPOs) of companies from the so-called BRIC nations — Brazil, Russia, India and China — enjoyed their best-ever start to the year, according to Thomson Reuters data:

• BRIC IPO volumes for the beginning of 2010 are at their largest level, in terms of both value and number of issues, for any January on record.

• Asian IPO issuance for January 2010 to date has reached a similar record, in terms of value, being the largest January on record.

• BRIC IPOs account for 76% of total global IPO activity for the year so far. This is up from 5.6% in January 2009.

• Materials tops the industry breakdown this month with 35% of the activity. Energy & Power and High Technology come 2nd & 3rd respectively.

Keeping score: Brazilian IPOs and Russian M&A

Highlights from the Thomson Reuters Investment Banking Scorecard:

Banco Santander (Brasil) SA raised $7.0 billion in an initial public offering in New York and Sao Paulo, marking the largest IPO by a Brazilian company on record and the second largest IPO this year behind an offering from China State Construction Engineering, which raised $7.3 billion in July.
Global initial public offerings for year-to-date 2009 total $59.4 billion, a 35% decline from last year at this time.  Despite a flurry of recent offerings, nearly 80% of IPOs this year, by proceeds, have come from companies based in China, Brazil and the United States.

An $11.7 billion bid by Russia’s Vimpelcom for Kyivstar, a Ukrainian provider of wireless telecommunications services partly owned by Norwegian state-owned Telenor ASA ranked as the week’s biggest deal and the largest acquisition by a Russian company this year.
Overall, worldwide M&A totals $1.5 trillion for year-to-date 2009, a 38% decline over last year.  Acquisitions by Russian companies total $28.6 billion so far this year, a decrease of 53% compared to 2008.

In its second common stock offering this year, Nomura Holdings Inc, raised $5.1 billion, marking the third largest Japanese follow-on offering this year behind Sumitomo Mitsui Financial Group ($9.4 billion) and Mizuho Financial Group ($5.9 billion).
The volume of follow-on offerings in Japan totals $35.6 billion for year-to-date 2009, nearly eight times greater than the volume seen during year-to-date 2008.  Capital raising by financial issuers dominates the market this year, accounting for 77% of total issuance.

Deals du Jour

Belgium’s Solvay is selling its drugs unit to U.S. partner Abbott Laboratories for 4.5 billion euros ($6.6 billion) in cash and reinvest in chemicals and plastics. Sources familiar with the deal have earlier told Reuters Abbott had agreed to buy the unit to bloster its flagging prescription drug business.

Australia’s biggest department store chain Myer plans to raise up to $2 billion in a share offering that will test investor appetite for retail stocks.

In M&A news reported by Reuters and elsewhere on Monday: 

* A Saudi prince is set to spend up to 350 million pounds ($558 million) to buy a 50 percent stake in English soccer club Liverpool, al-Riyadh newspaper quoted him as saying on Sunday. 

Private equity and the Russia-Georgia conflict

PE Hub’s Dan Primack has an interview with Michael Bleyzer, CEO of Ukraine-based private equity firm SigmaBleyzer, on the impact of the Russia-Georgia conflict and investing in the former Soviet Union.

Dan: Is there much of a private equity market in Georgia?

bleyzer.jpgMichael: I’m not aware of anyone activity investing there, although that doesn’t mean there is nobody. It’s a very small market with just a few real sectors for private equity. There’s some energy with hydroelectric you could do, and maybe something in food.

I went there before Saakashvilli became president, and met with the previous one. I liked the country but just couldn’t find things to do there. My general thought was that small markets on their own are difficult, and this was one with political worries as well.