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UPDATE 1-Denmark's ISS seeks to raise $1.4 bln in IPO this month
March 3, 2014 / 11:31 AM / 4 years ago

UPDATE 1-Denmark's ISS seeks to raise $1.4 bln in IPO this month

* Price range set at 140 to 175 Danish crowns per share

* Analysts see 5-15 pct discount for investors

* Private equity owners to sell part of their stake (Adds detail, analysts)

By Ole Mikkelsen

COPENHAGEN, March 3 (Reuters) - Danish business services firm ISS A/S said its planned initial public offering would take place on March 17 and it expected to raise around 7.69 billion Danish crowns ($1.42 billion).

The company set a price range of 140 to 175 crowns for the stock, valuing ISS at up to 31.7 billion crowns. It aims to use some of the proceeds to bring down its debt. Its private equity owners will sell only a small part of their holding to cover their costs, an ISS spokesman said.

Jyske Bank analyst Janne Vincent Kjaer said the IPO price represented a discount of 5-15 percent compared to her estimated valuation.

The final offer price and final number of offered shares will be determined via the book building process.

“When you look at comparable companies’ prices, it indicates that investors will gain a favorable discount in this IPO, as a reward for helping ISS to reduce their debt,” said analyst Soren Lontoft from Sydbank.

Funds managed by Swedish private equity firm EQT and by Goldman Sachs bought ISS for 22.1 billion crowns and delisted it from the Copenhagen bourse in 2005.

EQT and Goldman today hold 73 percent of ISS, after the Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan (OTTP) and KIRKBI, which invests funds from the family behind Lego toys, injected 500 million euros ($685 million) for a combined 26 percent stake in 2012.

At the indicative price range, the free float will be approximately 50-54 percent, assuming full exercise of the overallotment option. The free float will include the shares held by KIRKBI and OTPP.

Previous plans to list ISS, in 2007 and 2011, were dropped because of shaky stock markets. The company does not expect another delay this time, despite political tension in Ukraine.

“I‘m not worried about what happens in Ukraine,” Chief Executive Jeff Gravenhorst told reporters on Monday, adding that ISS had no business in that region.

The shares will be listed on the Nasdaq OMX Copenhagen market. ($1 = 5.4031 Danish crowns) (Additional reporting by Annabella Pultz Nielsen and Teis Hald Jensen; editing by David Holmes and Tom Pfeiffer)

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