(Adds analyst comment, background)
By Angeliki Koutantou
ATHENS, July 14 Greek renewable energy firm
ELTEH Anemos sold all the shares it hoped to in an initial
public offering, albeit at the bottom of its price range -
pointing to a mixed reception for the country's first IPO since
its debt crisis began in 2009.
Greek stocks have been battered by the country's six-year
recession and debt crisis that forced Athens to turn to the
European Union and the International Monetary Fund for about 240
billion euros in aid.
But market sentiment has picked up in recent months for
Greece, which expects to emerge from recession this year and
successfully returned to bond markets twice this year after a
Subscriptions for the IPO exceeded the 20.67 million
ordinary shares on offer, with more than half coming from
institutional investors, lead manager NBG Securities said on
Monday in a bourse filing.
But the offer price was set right at the bottom of the
1.70-1.97 euro range, it said. Based on that, the firm raised
35.1 million euros ($47.9 million).
The July 9-11 offering also took place against a backdrop of
unease in European stock markets triggered by concerns over the
financial health of the chief shareholder in Portugal's biggest
listed bank, Banco Espirito Santo (BES).
"We are satisfied because we managed to complete the capital
increase in adverse conditions," ELTEH Anemos Chief Operating
Officer Theodoros Sietis said, citing investor scepticism due to
the turmoil in Portugal.
"It is a vote of confidence in the company."
Concern about Banco Espirito Santo had also hit demand for a
Greek three-year bond last week, the country's second foray
since it returned to markets in April after a four-year exile.
Greece raised 1.5 billion euros from the sale, short of the
2.5 billion to 3 billion euros it was expected to raise.
Some analysts said the IPO fell short of expectations.
"We expected the IPO to be oversubscribed by one and a half
times," said Nikos Kafkas, an analyst at Merit Securities.
"Nevertheless, the result was satisfactory since the IPO
coincided with strong selling pressure on European shares last
week due to the Portuguese turmoil."
Anemos, a unit of Greece's biggest construction group
Ellaktor, is a mid-sized renewable energy producer,
operating 12 wind parks, a solar plant and a hydroelectric plant
in Greece, with 170 megawatts in total installed capacity.
The company has said it would use the proceeds from the IPO
to finance part of a 118 million euro investment plan for new
wind parks, which will enhance its capacity by about 94
megawatts by 2015.
Renewable energy is one of few industries in Greece that has
continued to expand through the recession, thanks to generous
The new shares are expected to start trading on the Athens
stock exchange on July 22.
(Editing by John Stonestreet, editing by Louise Heavens)