London IPO proceeds fall 80% in first quarter

By Mark McSherry

UK IPO proceeds in the first quarter of 2023 were 80% lower than the equivalent period in 2022, and 99% lower than the record levels experienced in Q1 of 2021, according to Ernst & Young LLP (EY).

Global IPO activity was also down in Q1 of 2023 with a fall of 8% in terms of deal numbers and 61% in terms of proceeds compared to Q1 of 2022.

Asia-Pacific dominated the quarter, accounting for 59% of global IPO deals, but still experienced a 70% reduction in proceeds compared to Q1 of 2022.

The London stock market witnessed a very slow start to 2023, with five issuers raising just £81 million in the first three months of the year.

The main London market saw only two IPOs, which raised a combined £63 million, while the Alternative Investment Market (AIM) saw three admissions in the quarter, raising £18 million.

The largest main market IPO in the period was Dar Global plc which raised £60 million and the largest AIM admission was Onward Opportunities which raised £13 million.

The London exchange’s performance during the first quarter of 2023 was a significant decline on the same period in 2022 when there were 12 IPOs on the main market and seven on AIM, which raised a combined total of £400 million.

The equivalent period in 2021 saw £5.7 billion raised in the UK markets.

EY UKI IPO Leader Scott McCubbin said: “The London IPO market continues to experience the extremely challenging conditions witnessed in 2022.

“There remain strong headwinds including the war in Ukraine, high energy and commodity prices, and wider inflationary pressures.

“We expect the market to remain challenging for the next few months, albeit with some green shoots in the form of an expected reduction in inflation by the year-end.

“This should help see a return to a stronger equity market later in the year. However, this remains at risk given the continued uncertain geopolitical landscape.”

Global IPO markets saw 299 IPOs in Q1 of 2023, raising $21.5 billion. This was 8% lower in terms of the number of IPOs and 61% lower in terms of proceeds when compared to Q1 of 2022.