June 5, 2020 / 3:46 PM / a month ago

Shift4, Legend Biotech surge in banner week for U.S. IPOs

(Reuters) - Shares of Shift4 Payments Inc FOUR.N and Legend Biotech Corp LEGN.O soared in their U.S. market debuts on Friday, capping the best week for initial public offerings in two years.

Some eight companies completed their IPOs this week, including record label Warner Music Group WMG.O and business-intelligence software provider ZoomInfo Technologies Inc ZI.O, with all deals pricing either at or above their target ranges.

Renaissance Capital, which tracks IPOs, said it was the first time that eight IPOs in a week managed to get such a strong reception from investors.

The strong debuts also underscore the extent to which investor appetite for new stocks offerings has recovered after the COVID-19 pandemic put several IPOs on hold earlier this year.

Shift4 Payments jumped as much as 51% to $34.72, giving the payments processor a valuation of $2.79 billion; while Legend Biotech surged as much as 73.65% to $39.94, valuing it at $5.17 billion.

“The journey really began 21 years ago when the company was started in my parent’s basement,” Shift4 Chief Executive Officer Jared Isaacman said in an interview. “We’ve always aspired for this day.”

Companies that provide online infrastructure for financial and payment services are getting a boost amid the COVID-19 pandemic as more customers gravitate towards contactless payments and online banking services.

Biotech companies are also in strong demand as a search for a vaccine for the coronavirus pandemic continues.

Chinese online grocery firm Dada Nexus rose as much as 15.6% to $18.5, despite warnings from U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on “fraudulent” accounting practices at China-based companies on Thursday. The company’s market value soared to about $4 billion.

Reporting by C Nivedita, Abhishek Manikandan, Noor Zainab Hussain and Joshua Franklin; Editing by Ramakrishnan M. and Anil D'Silva

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