Investors gobble up new issues

The Jamaican economic and financial environment has undergone much change over the past five decades or so. Since the early 1970s, the country lost its way and endured years of negative economic and in cases social development.
The evidence can be seen in an exchange rate that was US$1.10 to the Jamaican dollar to nearly $150 to one US dollar now. Interest rates rose from 5.5 percent in 1970 for governments Local Registered Stock, by the dark years in 1990s rates on government paper were as high as 52 percent in 1994. The average Treasury bill rates, between 1992 and 1994 was 39.5 percent. That was the challenge that the banks and businesses face in that period that led to the collapse of the businesses and the destruction of the financial sector.
The above set the stage for the state of the capital market in Jamaica now. In 1986, National Commercial Bank as it was then named went to the market, with the issue pulling in $249 million or US$45 million and attracted over 30,000 shareholders in a heavily oversubscribed issue. The total amount attracted seems to be the largest public issue ever in the local market.
That was then, now interest rates have hit levels that are the lowest on record, with Treasury bill rates now less than one percent and there are now more than 200,000 investors owning shares compared to around 40,000 after the NCB issue, making for a larger pool of investors to draw on to take up new issues.
Three companies went to the market to raise funds in January and all were successful with the latest Derrimon Trading Company invitation for subscription of 1,498,698,931 Ordinary Shares with the option to upsize was oversubscribed with taking up an additional 301,301,069 shares. The company will issue 1.8 million  Shares and take in J$4.08 billion in gross proceeds.
The allocation of the issue will result in existing shareholders and Derrimon team members receiving 51.63 percent of their application. Key Investors will get all of their applications, Lead Broker’s Clients 83.72 percent and Non-Reserved Share Applicants (General Public) 39.15 percent.
Proven Investments upsized of the Additional Public Offer (APO) of ordinary shares to a maximum of 134,124,037 units with applications totalling 154,231,234 shares, for an oversubscription of US$4.3 million. Proven states that 4,148 applications were received, totalling just over US$34.5 million.
Applicants in General Pool and existing shareholders applicants in the pool will receive a full allotment, but Key Investors Applicants in this pool will receive 70.75 of the subscription amount.
Sygnus Credit Investments APO of ordinary shares was upsized to 240,887,900 Shares, reflecting a 54 percent upsize to the maximum allowed. The issue pulled around US31 million for the company.

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