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Dutch online retailer Coolblue latest to shelve IPO

EconomyOct 13, 2021 07:56
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AMSTERDAM (Reuters) -Dutch online store Coolblue on Wednesday became the latest European company to shelve its plans for listing its shares as stock markets have become gripped by uncertainty.

Fear of inflation and rising interest rates and concerns about a property crisis in China have soured investors' appetite for new stock listings in recent weeks, as stock markets fall from record highs.

This week, British roofing specialist Marley Group shelved its plans for an initial public offering (IPO) in London because of market volatility, after similar moves by France's Icade Sante and Switzerland's Chronext a week earlier.

"The current market conditions create uncertainty among investors towards IPOs, in particular in the ecommerce space," Coolblue founder and Chief Executive Pieter Zwart said.

"We decided to postpone the intended IPO until further notice," he said in a statement.

Coolblue, the Netherlands' second-largest online retailer behind Ahold Delhaize's Bol.com, said on Oct. 1 it planned to list on the Amsterdam Stock Exchange within weeks.

Sources close to the matter had said it was aiming for a valuation of 3 billion to 4 billion euros ($3.5 billion-$4.6 billion) with its IPO, in which 20% to 30% of its shares would be sold.

Dutch investor HAL Trust has a 49% interest in Coolblue, while Zwart holds the remaining stake.

Coolblue's revenue jumped 31% in the first six months of 2021 to 1.2 billion euros, while earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) rose 15% to 54 million euros.

Originally a specialist in consumer electronics and other household goods, Coolblue has also ventured into the energy sector, with the installation of solar panels and charging points for electric cars in recent years.

Founded in 1999 by Zwart and two of his friends, the company operates a dozen physical stores in the Netherlands and Belgium.

($1 = 0.8660 euros)

Dutch online retailer Coolblue latest to shelve IPO
 

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