COCA-COLA Hellenic, one of Greece’s largest companies, yesterday made its transition to the London Stock Exchange (LSE) where it will shortly enter the FTSE 100.
The company, which wants to broaden its investor base, chose London as the largest and most liquid exchange in Europe. Some 40 per cent of its freely floated shares are owned by UK investors.
Dimitris Lois, CEO of Coca-Cola Hellenic, said: “This is a milestone for our company and an important day for everyone in the Coca-Cola HBC family. We are delighted that we are now admitted to trading on the premium listing of the London Stock Exchange, as we expect this to benefit our shareholders through enhanced liquidity, as well as our company through better access to the international capital markets and a wider potential investor base.”
Coca-Cola Hellenic’s admission to the LSE comes at a time of increased scrutiny for foreign companies listed in London, following controversies at the miners ENRC and Bumi Resources.
Barclays’ European beverages and tobacco analyst Samar Chand said the new listing provided an “ideal entry point into what is fundamentally an attractive growth story.”
Alexander Justham, CEO of London Stock Exchange, said: “As the world’s most international stock market, we offer companies from around the world access to an unrivalled pool of liquidity and to a broad and deep investor base.
Over 355m shares were admitted onto the LSE.
ADVISERS CREDIT SUISSE
Bringing the firm to market was Credit Suisse’s George Maddison and Stefanos Papapanagiotou. Maddison, vice chairman at the investment bank, is well known in financial circles having handled the float of Tony Hayward and Nat Rothschild’s original investment vehicle Vallares in 2011. Maddison, who has been at the bank for 23 years, was also a member of the Treasury’s advisory team on refinancing the banking sector and designing the Asset Protection Scheme. Papapanagiotou is a specialist in the bank’s Greece & Cyprus unit, having joined eight Credit Suisse years ago. He spent six years at Deutsche Bank in European mergers and acquisitions before that and was previously a forex trader. He holds an MSc in economics and finance from Warwick Business School.