Swell returns for some from New Year floats

January is the month of new beginnings in the Western world.

The investment world was no exception this year, with five new ASX listings in a range of industries coming out of WA between January 17 and 31.

And a look at the initial few months shows the ride for those who resolved to invest in a new year IPO has been exhilarating for some but less than rewarding for others.

First off the block and with a comprehensive portfolio of gold, nickel and base metals interests, Independence Gold opened at 26 cents on an issue price of 20 cents. It then soared to 42 cents in March, before settling at around 31. An initial $2000 investor, then, could have realised a profit of as much as $2,200, and is now still sitting on a 55 per cent gain.

Hire Intelligence followed one day after Independence, on an offer price two and a half times that of its immediate predecessor.

The ride for investors in the franchise operator and computer rental company has matched the higher entry fee, the stock opening at an almost 60 per cent premium and climbing as high as $1.75, also in March. With the price at around $1.24 this month, investors here have gained 148 per cent, and could cash in with a $2960 gross gain on a $2000 IPO investment.

Two of the three other ventures which followed in January, however, have not yet rewarded the faith of their investors.

As with Independence Gold, Eastland Medical Systems’ investors also paid 20 cents on initial entry. But it seems the market has not been as excited by opportunities to supply new injection, infusion and blood-drawing devices.

Investors saw the stock open at a 10 per cent premium, but since then have witnessed a drop to 10 cents, followed by a recovery still 12.5 per cent short of issue. With Eastland, $2000 issue investors could have lost as much as 50 per cent and are now $250 out of pocket.

Investors in Pelican Resources must consider themselves the most unfortunate, however. A $2000 initial investment plummeted to $460 on opening. Pelican, like Independence, has gold, nickel and base metal interests and was another 20-cent float, but following the devastating 4.6 cents debut, has hit a maximum of just 16 cents and this past week is struggling to overtake 11 cents.

The last January listing, Optima Corporation Limited on January 31, opened at 21 cents on a 20-cent issue. Investors of the financial management services company chaired by Barry MacKinnon have had a comparatively steady ride. The stock has managed 23 cents, and no dips have been below 19 cents, and an initial investor would have been sitting on par or just five per cent in front during the past week.

Seven more WA companies have listed on the ASX in the past three months.

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