SPH Reit makes sterling IPO debut, ending at 9% premium to offer price

SPH Reit made a strong share market debut today, with units up 11 per cent at one point in afternoon trade.

The stock listed only at 2pm, but there was enough time for it to hit a high of $1, up from the initial public offering (IPO) price of 90 cents, before it closed 9 per cent up at 98.5 cents.

Heavy investor interest led to 121.95 million units worth $120.2 million changing hands, making the counter the most active by value of trades.

"For the afternoon, SPH Reit was definitely in play," said remisier Desmond Leong.

"It was quite an anticipated IPO so naturally there's a lot of interest."

The robust performance had been expected by many market watchers, given that the units were about 37 times subscribed during the IPO, indicating high demand.

The placement tranche of about 224.9 million units was about 42 times subscribed, while the public offer of 84 million units had a subscription rate of about 25 times.

The SPH Reit listing brings the number of real estate investment trusts (Reits) and property trusts on the Singapore Exchange (SGX) to 33, with a combined value of about $60 billion, said SGX chief executive Magnus Bocker at the listing ceremony.

SPH chairman Lee Boon Yang said the SPH Reit will benefit from the buoyant Singapore retail scene and from the planned asset management and active leasing programmes.

The vehicle holds Paragon, an upscale Orchard Road mall, and The Clementi Mall, a mid-market suburban centre. The Seletar Mall is still being developed and will be sold to the Reit when it is completed.

The IPO attracted big-name cornerstone investors, including Great Eastern Life Assurance Company, Hong Leong Asset Management and Morgan Stanley Investment Management Company.