16/10/2007 - 22:00

NRW on solid ground

16/10/2007 - 22:00

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The $303 million initial public offering by earthmoving company NRW Holdings Ltd has led Western Australia’s strong resources-driven growth in IPO activity for the September quarter.

The $303 million initial public offering by earthmoving company NRW Holdings Ltd has led Western Australia’s strong resources-driven growth in IPO activity for the September quarter.

The IPO was ranked as best-performing offering among Australia's five biggest floats.

Welshpool-based NRW, which listed on September 5, was the only company in the top five to produce a positive return for investors, and is currently trading at a 31 per cent premium to its original opening price of $2.31.

WA recorded a total of 31 floats for the September quarter, raising $557.2 million, up from the $273 million raised in the June quarter.

The latest quarter also produced nine of WA’s 10 biggest IPOs for the calendar year to date, according to Deloitte.

The strong quarter brings the total number of WA floats for the calendar year to the September quarter to 85, compared with 56 in the corresponding period in 2006.

While the biggest IPOs came from outside the resources sector, resources companies continued to dominate, with 26 of the 31 floats in the September quarter.

Resources companies were also the strongest performers, with four of the five best performing IPOs in the country based in WA.

West Perth-based gold and copper explorer Centaurus Resources Ltd was the best performer, with its share price increasing more than 200 per cent since listing on August 10.

Other WA companies to make up the top five performers nationally included gold and copper explorer Mavuzi Resources Ltd, iron explorer Ironclad Mining Ltd, and gold and copper explorer Red Emperor Resources Ltd.

Ironclad’s $20 million IPO was the third biggest for the quarter, with funds used to accelerate the development of its Wilcherry Hill iron ore project, located in South Australia’s Eyre Peninsula.

The Trafford Resources Ltd spin-off closed its IPO oversubscribed almost two weeks ahead of schedule, and listed on July 11.

Ironclad is currently trading at an 80 per cent premium to its offer price of $1.

Outside the resources sector, Perth-based wealth management business Plan B Group Holdings Group Ltd, which conducted a $30 million IPO, the second biggest offering after NRW, has delivered a 43 per cent premium to its shareholders since listing on July 12.

The company will deliver its maiden dividend as a listed company of one cent per share, fully franked, after announcing a $4.3 million net profit for 2006-07.

The third biggest IPO for the quarter, by Redcliffe-based Global Construction Services Ltd, debuted strongly, rising 20 per cent from its offer price to close at $1.20 on its first day of trading.

The company continued on its strong run and is currently trading at $1.60.

Since listing on August 17 following a $20 million IPO, Global Construction Services has been on the acquisition trail, acquiring Bayswater Scaffold Hire for $500,000 in late August.

Earlier this month, the company acquired site accommodation provider Budget Portables for $10 million.

The company is chaired by Perth Airport general manager property Neil Kidd, with former PCH Group director Enzo Gullotti serving as managing director.

West Perth-based gold exploration company Beadell Resources Ltd also performed strongly on debut, closing at a 36 per cent premium to its offer price of 25 cents.

It is currently trading at $1.80.

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