CICC named top underwriter for China's IPOs

10:04, January 04, 2010      

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China International Capital Corp (CICC) topped the rankings of the underwriters of China's initial public offerings (IPOs) in 2009, making an estimated 1.23 billion yuan from fees, Bloomberg data showed.

The earning of the country's largest investment bank was boosted by underwriting the China State Construction Engineering Corp's 50.1 billion yuan IPO, the world's second-largest in 2009. CICC also took two other heavyweight companies public, China Shipbuilding Co Ltd and China CNR Co Ltd, raising 14.7 billion yuan and 13.9 billion yuan respectively.

CITIC Securities, the top underwriter in 2008, fell to the No 2 spot in the ranking, making 855 million yuan from IPO deals totaling 28.7 billion yuan, according to Bloomberg data. The third slot went to Orient Securities, which earned 258 million yuan from IPO deals worth 11.9 bllion yuan.

IPOs are among the most lucrative advisory businesses for Chinese securities firms as China has witnessed an IPO boom since it reopened the market last June after a 10-month halt blamed on the widespread global credit crunch.

Chinese securities companies saw an exponential growth in their revenues from the IPO business, making a total of 4.76 billion yuan from underwriting fees, doubling the 2.35 billion yuan in 2008. But the earnings still lagged far behind the 7.61 billion yuan made during the pre-crisis period in 2007.

Last year, 43 Chinese securities firms helped 111 companies go public on the mainland's A-share market, raising 202.2 billion yuan. The value of the IPO deals taken by the top 10 underwriters accounted for more than 70 percent of the total IPO values.

Market insiders said the IPOs of heavyweight companies will remain the target for large investment bank and securities companies such as CICC and CITIC Securities next year while small and medium securities companies will make start-up board ChiNext their primary focus.

Stock prices of listed securities companies soared sharply in the past two weeks, mainly stimulated by unconfirmed reports that China's State Council has given the final nod for the introduction of index futures in 2010.

Analysts said Chinese securities companies would likely see a surge in revenues this year after the regulators announce a clear timetable for the launch of the index futures, margin trading and short selling.

"The new products will certainly boost the earnings and valuations of the brokerage stocks," said Cheng Binbin, an analyst with Qilu Securities "It not only means strong profit growth for securities firms in the future but also a gradual transition toward a more risk-diversified business model."

It is forecast that margin trading and short selling will likely contribute 9.41 to 14.3 billion yuan in revenues of securities companies in 2010 while index futures will contribute 5.76 to 6.34 billion yuan.

The net profit of China's brokerage industry may reach 90 billion yuan in 2009, a year-on-year increase of 90 percent, according to an estimate by Guotai Junan Securities.

Meanwhile, foreign banks also grabbed a share of the lucrative pie of China's booming capital market last year with Swiss bank UBS ranked the largest underwriter of Chinese overseas IPOs. The bank contracted $728 million in underwriting fees from Chinese companies that sought IPOs in the Hong Kong market, worth a total of $26 billion last year, Bloomberg data showed.

Mergers and acquisitions (M&As) made by the Chinese companies remained the traditional cash cow for foreign investment banks in 2009. Morgan Stanley was the No 1 financial advisor in M&A deals worth $20.9 billion on the Chinese mainland and Hong Kong, according to Bloomberg data.

The largest M&A deal in 2009 made by a Chinese company was the $7.5 billion acquisition of Swiss oil company Addax Petroleum by China's largest oil refiner, Sinopec.

Source: China Daily

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