MindChamps prices IPO at 83 cents apiece

MindChamps founder David Chiem is confident the firm is "well positioned to capture growth of the early childhood education industry globally". Apart from Singapore and Australia, its target markets include China, the US, Britain, New Zealand, Malays
MindChamps founder David Chiem is confident the firm is "well positioned to capture growth of the early childhood education industry globally". Apart from Singapore and Australia, its target markets include China, the US, Britain, New Zealand, Malaysia, South Korea and Vietnam.ST FILE PHOTO

It aims to raise $49.3m in gross proceeds to drive expansion

MindChamps PreSchool, Singapore's biggest provider of premium pre-schools by market share, is aiming to raise $49.3 million in gross proceeds from its mainboard listing on the Singapore Exchange to fund expansion plans.

The company, led by founder David Chiem, said the listing would allow MindChamps to spread its pedagogy - developed in collaboration with world experts working in the domains of neuroscience, child psychology and theatre - overseas.

Apart from Singapore and Australia, target markets include China, the United States, Britain, New Zealand, Malaysia, South Korea and Vietnam.

"With our unique 3-Mind education model and leading position in the premium-range pre-school market, we are confident that MindChamps is well positioned to capture growth of the early childhood education industry globally," said Mr Chiem, who is also the group's executive chairman and chief executive officer.

Yesterday, MindChamps offered 30.4 million shares at 83 cents each for its initial public offering (IPO), valuing the firm at $200.5 million. The offer comprises a placement of 28.4 million shares and a public offer of two million shares. The placement tranche includes 2.4 million shares reserved for management.

The offer comprises new shares as well as existing shares sold by MindChamps Holdings, an investment holding company. MindChamps Holdings will sell additional shares if required to cover an over-allotment option.

Separate from the IPO, cornerstone investors - comprising Hong Kong-listed China First Capital Group (CFCG), Hillhouse Capital Management and Target Asset Management - will subscribe for an additional 28.9 million shares, also at 83 cents each.

  • MINDCHAMPS IPO

  • 30.4million
    Shares offered by MindChamps for the IPO.

  • 2million
    Number of IPO shares offered for public subscription.

  • 28.4million
    Number of IPO shares offered for placement. Of the placement shares, 2.4 million are reserved for management.

MindChamps, whose existing shareholders include Singapore Press Holdings, said assuming the over-allotment option is not exercised, it will raise $49.3 million in gross proceeds from both the IPO and the cornerstone placement, of which about $47.6 million will be due to the company.

MindChamps intends to use $6.1 million to partially repay an outstanding acquisition loan; $34.5 million for expansion, including potential acquisitions; $4 million for general corporate purposes and working capital; and $3 million for listing-related expenses.

Ahead of the IPO, it has entered into business partnerships with CFCG and Hillhouse Capital that will see them operate pre-schools and kindergartens under the MindChamps brand in China, including Hong Kong, as well as in Australia and the US.

In Singapore, MindChamps has a 38.5 per cent share of premium-range pre-schools and has sold a total of 109 licences under unit franchise agreements and master franchise arrangements.

For the financial year ended Dec 31 last year, MindChamps generated $18.4 million in revenue, up 48 per cent from $12.4 million in 2015.

The offer will close at noon on Nov 22, and the shares will start trading on Nov 24. DBS Bank is the sole issue manager.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on November 18, 2017, with the headline 'MindChamps prices IPO at 83 cents apiece'. Print Edition | Subscribe