(Adds details and background)
* New shares priced at 8 euros each
* Gross proceeds 757 million euros
* Free float to rise to as much as 35.4 pct
VIENNA, Oct 9 Austrian insurer Uniqa
has raised 757 million euros ($1.03 billion) in a stock sale
that will finance expansion in eastern Europe and boost its free
float to as much as 35.4 percent, it said on Wednesday.
It priced shares in the deal at 8 euros each, the mid-point
of the indicated price range, as Reuters had reported on
Tuesday, citing sources close to the issue.
When Uniqa launched the share sale last month, it said it
aimed to raise around 750 million euros and raise its free float
to as much as 36.7 percent.
Its "re-IPO" - it will raise the free float from just 7
percent - is the biggest deal on the Vienna Stock Exchange since
Erste Group raised around 660 million euros in a
rights issue this year and aluminium group AMAG went
public in a transaction worth 411 million in April 2011.
It comes amid a resurgence in European equity-related
financings such as IPOs, follow-on deals and convertible bond
issues as market confidence has improved. Bankers working in the
sector expect the rest of the year to be busy.
The deal allocated nearly 95 million shares to investors,
including 6.7 million in a greenshoe overallotment option.
Its core shareholders had agreed not to take part in the
rights issue, which offered five new shares for each 11 held
now. Raiffeisen Zentralbank until now held 45.3
percent, the Austria insurance foundation 44.1 percent and the
Collegialitaet foundation 3.3 percent.
Its stock fell 3.6 percent in early trading to 8.15 euros.
Uniqa has said it aims to double the number of customers it
had in 2010 to 15 million by 2020 and increase pretax profit by
up to 400 million euros between 2010 and 2015.
Deutsche Bank, Morgan Stanley and
Raiffeisen Centrobank are joint bookrunners, with Barclays
, Berenberg and UBS as co-bookrunners. KBW is
($1 = 0.7355 euros)
(Reporting by Michael Shields, Arno Schuetze and Alexander