Thursday 5 December 2019 4:15 pm

Drop in European private equity exits via IPOs as tough conditions bite

The number of European private equity exits executed via listings is declining as sponsors seek alternative routes amid challenging market conditions, new figures show.

Of the European private equity exits that have taken place so far this year, just 1.4 per cent were initial public offerings (IPOs), according to Mergermarket data.

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This figure is down from 2.1 per cent for the whole of 2018 and 4.8 per cent the year before. 

Gustav Sandstrom, Mergermarket ECM assistant editor, said European private equity firms were “increasingly shying away from exits via IPOs as tough market conditions force them to consider other options”.

Across Europe, there have been 11 initial public offering (IPO) listings so far this year with a combined offering size of €5.84bn (£4.9bn).

This represents a significant drop on the 21 deals worth a combined €7.8bn for the whole of 2018, and 53 offerings worth €16.19bn the year before. 

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Despite the slow in exits executed via IPOs, Sandstrom said such exits had “still generated some of the region’s largest listings so far this year,” adding: “an exciting range of private equity related potential floats remains in the pipeline.”

These private equity-related listings include Permira’s exit from German tech firm Teamviewer and KKR’s float of Swiss business service provider Softwareone.