Line Corp sets 2,700-3,200 yen tentative IPO price range: Dow Jones

28 Jun, 2016 10:18 am

TOKYO – Japanese messaging app operator Line Corp has set a tentative price range of 2,700 yen to 3,200 yen ($26 to $32) a share for an initial public offering (IPO) in Tokyo, Dow Jones reported on Tuesday, citing an unidentified source.

The range compared with the 2,800 yen reference price Line announced earlier this month.

At the top of the reported range, Line would raise 112 billion yen ($1.1 billion) from the sale of 35 million new shares.

The company plans to list in Tokyo on July 15. It also plans to list in New York a day earlier.

Line on Monday delayed announcing the range until Tuesday after 3 p.m. local time (0600 GMT). It said it needed to assess equity trading in New York and London after Britain’s vote to leave the European Union caused turbulence in financial markets.

On Monday the S&P 500 index fell 1.8 percent, taking losses to 5.3 percent since Britain’s referendum result on Friday – its worst two-day slide since August 2015. The FTSE 100 index fell 2.6 percent. It has lost 5.6 percent since the vote.

Line, owned by South Korea’s Naver Corp, has little direct exposure to European or American messaging markets.

Rather, it pitched its IPO to investors with an emphasis on value and steady returns in its core markets of Japan, Thailand, Indonesia and Taiwan, instead of explosive growth potential.

But that pitch, which included a plan to make more money from advertising, left domestic fund managers unimpressed.

Some said Line should have listed when it commanded more value during its period of lightning growth – from a makeshift communications tool born in the aftermath of Japan’s 2011 earthquake and tsunami, to the country’s dominant mobile messaging app.

Still, there has been firm interest from international investors, a person involved in the IPO who declined to be identified told Reuters, pointing to optimism at Line’s prospects in Southeast Asia. Japan’s retail investors have also shown strong interest in the shares, brokerages in Tokyo said. -Reuters

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