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Banks

COVID-19 vaccine vial maker Stevanato preps IPO valuing it at up to $5 billion: sources

LONDON (Reuters) - Italy’s Stevanato Group, manufacturer of glass vials for COVID-19 vaccines and other healthcare products, is making plans for an initial public offering this year that could value the company at between $4 billion-$5 billion, three sources with knowledge of the situation told Reuters.

FILE PHOTO: A medical worker holds a vial of a COVID-19 vaccine in a newly opened mass vaccination centre at the Cecchignola military compound, in Rome, Italy, February 23, 2021. REUTERS/Remo Casilli

Bank of America and Morgan Stanley are among the banks appointed for the stock market listing which is expected to take place in New York, two of the sources added.

Spokespersons for Bank of America and Morgan Stanley declined to comment.

One of the sources said the healthcare packaging company would look to raise around $500 million from the IPO.

The company wants to capitalize on strong investor demand for healthcare assets but a final decision on whether to list in New York or possibly Milan has yet to be made, the sources said.

A spokesman for the company declined to comment.

The Padua-based firm, which is owned by Italy’s Stevanato family, makes glass tube containers for the pharmaceutical and healthcare sectors and glass cartridges for insulin pen injectors.

It reported core earnings of 111.1 million euros ($135.88 million) in 2019 and a turnover of 570.3 million euros, the company said.

Its estimated valuation is based on how major peers such as U.S. drug packaging company West Pharma is trading, said one of the sources. West Pharma has a market capitalisation of $20.7 billion.

Last year, Stevanato signed an agreement with the global Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations - which is a co-leader of the World Health Organization’s global vaccine-sharing scheme COVAX - for the supply of 100 million glass vials to hold up to 2 billion doses of a vaccine against the COVID-19 virus.

Stocks in the healthcare sector have soared since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, particularly of those companies making products to combat the spread of the novel coronavirus.

New York’s Nasdaq exchange is the world’s biggest investment hub for biotechnology companies and its biotech index has a market cap of $1.3 trillion dollars.

($1 = 0.8177 euros)

Reporting by Abhinav Ramnarayan, Arno Schuetze and Elisa Andolin; Editing by Susan Fenton

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