Australia’s Nine to raise up to $658m in float

City A.M. Reporter
AUSTRALIA’S Nine Entertainment is seeking to raise up to A$697m ($658m) in an initial public offering (IPO), according to its prospectus filed this morning.

Nine plans to sell 304.7m new and existing shares through in the float at an indicative price range of A$2.05 to A$2.35 a share, the prospectus said.

The float will be able to help the troubled TV network to pay down debt, which avoided receivership with US hedge funds Oaktree Capital Group and Apollo Global Management taking control in a more than $3bn debt for equity swap.

Contract for difference provider IG is offering a so-called grey market which lets its clients trade derivatives ahead of Nine's listing based on where they think the shares will end up after the first day of trading.

“The demand is there... It then gets back to what will the valuation be, most are holding it at 8 to 9 times earnings,” said Evan Lucas, IG’s market strategist, adding that the valuation was similar to rival Seven West Media.

A key uncertainty for Nine is its level of debt, said Lucas.