Companies and governments the world over have decided to postpone or cancel initial public offerings amid the economic instability caused by the war in Ukraine.
Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has many collateral effects, one of which is a sweep of IPO cancellations all over the world. Data provider Dealogic calculated the withdrawal in Europe of $634.6 million of equity deals from the capital market in February alone. American transactions cancelled or paused were valued at $1.17 billion.
Efima, a small cloud firm in Finland, had expected to raise $15 million on the First North Marketplace, but “stock market sentiment weakened at a critical stage,” explains Tero Salminen, Efima’s CEO. High inflation, supply chain issues and the prospect of higher interest rates were already souring the investment climate; Russia’s Ukraine invasion brought on a thunderstorm, so the Cloud services company put the brakes on its IPO.
Fred. Olsen Windcarrier of Norway had likewise been preparing its debut: a €150 million IPO on the Oslo Stock Exchang–until the market conditions decided otherwise–their IPO was postponed in February. It was the same story in America at Flexenergy Green Solutions and at Cardiva Medical. Flexenergy scrapped its $20 million IPO on the Nasdaq and Cardiva Medical cancelled its $75 million offering (before being bought up by Haemonetics). Elsewhere, Brazil’s Trocafone shelved its IPO and India’s state-owned Life Insurance Corp delayed a 5% float of its shares, which had been expected to raise $8 billion. “I need to go back and review the situation,” finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman said in a Financial Times interview.
IPOs have not been the only financial deals impacted by investor wariness heightened by the conflict. Car maker Tesla had to postpone a $1 billion offering of bonds backed by auto leases, for example. Software company SS&C Technologies Holdings of Connecticut recently dropped a $1.7 billion buyout loan–only to pick it up a week later in a smaller form ($1.53 billion) due to reduced investor appetite.