‘Obnoxious pricing’ scuppers private equity IPOs

Initial public offerings (IPOs) for "good companies" owned by private equity firms are being passed over by fund managers, due to "obnoxious pricing".

Speaking at an Australian Unity hosted event in Sydney, Platypus Asset Management chief investment officer, Don Williams, said that while valuations for most IPOs were "pretty good", a number were overpriced.

"Towards the end of last year there was some obnoxious pricing from some IPOs, and typically those didn't get away," he said.

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"We passed on a lot of IPOs that were good companies, because we just thought the pricing was obnoxious, and it won't surprise you to hear that most of those were coming out of private equity."

While Williams was critical of the offerings being made by private equity firms, he said existing stocks offered plenty of room for stock-pickers to prosper going forward.

"The thing that's interesting about the Australian market, even though it's been tracking sideways for longer than we'd like it to, there are still really good opportunities," he said.

"From our point-of-view, last year was a pretty good year for stock-pickers, and as long as you can ignore the index you can still make money in Australian equities."

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