May 27, 2010 / 9:48 PM / 8 years ago

Mexico real estate developer tries new IPO plan

* Developer Tres Marias to list shares in Mexico

* New scheme designed to give more access to bourse

By Gabriela Lopez

MONTERREY, Mexico, May 27 (Reuters) - Mexican real estate developer Tres Marias aims to go public by June 8 under a new financing scheme that allows smaller companies to tap capital markets, the company said on Thursday.

The third initial public offering since mid-2008 in Mexico, the deal will be the country’s first under a plan that lists companies shares over a period of time instead of all at once.

Big institutional investors will be able to buy shares in Tres Marias immediately.

But others will not be able to buy Tres Marias stock for three years, when the shares are due to trade freely on the stock market, similar to companies already included in the IPC index .MXX.

“We will be the first to go into the market with these characteristics,” Tres Marias Chief Executive Alberto Herrejon told Reuters in an interview.

The idea is to help small companies raise financing and win investor confidence. Companies would need at least 20 shareholders to go public, far fewer than a traditional listing that needs a minimum of 200.

    Mexico’s stock market has suffered from a lack of IPOs as family-run companies prefer not to cede control and instead turn to banks for financing, while smaller companies cannot meet the requirements to list on the bourse.

    Forestry company Proteak and restaurant operator Arrachera House could list under the scheme later this year, according to prospectuses filed with the stock exchange in Mexico City.

    Herrejon, who is also a shareholder in the company, said he expects 70 percent of shares in the IPO to be snapped up by institutional investors and the remainder by Mexican pension funds, known as Afores, as well as investment banks and insurance companies.

    The IPO is due to raise around 1 billion pesos ($78 million) with the launch of up to 29,140,900 shares at a price of 34.32 pesos.

    Tres Marias, which builds houses and operates shopping malls in the western state of Michoacan, plans to invest $1.5 billion pesos over the next two years. (Reporting by Gabriela Lopez. Editing by Robert MacMillan.)

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