Swiss Re has suspended plans to list its UK life insurance business
ReAssure in what would have been one of London's biggest IPOs this year, due to heightened caution and weak demand in the UK primary market, according to the insurer—further proof of Brexit's adverse effects on investor appetite.
In June, Swiss Re and ReAssure's other shareholder
MS&AD announced a price range of between 280 pence per share and 330 pence per share for the IPO, which would have given the company a market cap of up to £3.3 billion (around $4.13 billion).
The Zurich-based giant has also maintained plans to reduce its stake from 75% to less than 50% and is leaving the door open for a listing in the future. ReAssure, which specializes in closed books of business, reportedly has £68.7 billion in assets under administration and manages 4.3 million policies.
ReAssure's isn't the only IPO to have suffered the consequences of Brexit. Spanish telecom giant
Telefónica reportedly pushed back plans to float its UK unit
O2 last year, also on the grounds of weak investor demand. At the time, the business was said to be valued at up to £10 billion.
Aside from the prospect of a no-deal exit from the EU, the spate of disappointing UK listings may have put a damper on investor enthusiasm. The much-hyped public debut of luxury carmaker
Aston Martin, which was one of last year's biggest, fell flat as its shares dropped immediately in its first day of trading and have continued on that trajectory since. Fintech business
Funding Circle had an equally disastrous IPO and despite having floated at 440 pence per share, each is now worth just 128.2 pence.
While IPOs have been somewhat subdued this year,
Network International's April debut, which raised £1.1 billion, and
Trainline's listing last month, in which its shares closed up more than 17% on the first trading day, offer optimism for UK businesses looking to go public.
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