Porsche debuts with $72bn price tag in Germany's biggest IPO in 25 years

The listing, one of Europe's largest, comes despite instability in the region's markets

Porsche chief executive Oliver Blume, right, and chief financial officer Lutz Menschke ring the opening bell during the IPO of German car maker Porsche at the Frankfurt Stock Exchange on Thursday. EPA
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Porsche made its debut on the stock market on Thursday, with a price tag of about €75 billion ($72.39bn) after Volkswagen priced shares at the top end of the range, braving turbulent market conditions.

The bumper flotation, expected to generate about €19.5bn, comes as instability in European markets has deterred other share sales by car makers, including luxury brands.

The sale values Porsche close to the market capitalisation of its parent Volkswagen, which is worth about €84bn, and puts it ahead of rivals including Ferrari.

Oliver Blume, chief executive of Porsche, stands in front of a board displaying the chart of Germany's share index DAX during the launch of the IPO. AFP

Books closed on Wednesday on what is one of Europe's biggest initial public offerings and the second largest in Germany since Deutsche Telekom made its debut in 1996, at the top end of the €76.50 to €82.50 range it announced this month.

Shares opened at €84 each and were trading at €82.88 at 11.30am UAE time.

Volkswagen shares were down 4.9 per cent in early Frankfurt trade.

Companies in continental Europe have raised the smallest amount this year since the 2009 global financial crisis at $44bn, of which only $4.5bn comes from IPOs, based on Refinitiv data.

Volkswagen has said the market's volatility was precisely why fund managers with money to invest were sorely in need of a stable and attractive stock such as Porsche.

"Porsche was and is the pearl in the Volkswagen Group," said Chris-Oliver Schickentanz, chief investment officer at fund manager Capitell.

"The IPO has now made it very, very transparent what value the market brings to Porsche. That, of course, also has a positive effect on Volkswagen shareholders."

Faced with tens of billions in costs for a radical shift towards electric mobility and software, Volkswagen executives had long considered listing Porsche, a move they hoped would raise much-needed funds and lift Volkswagen's own value.

The Porsche and Piech families, in turn, will solidify their control over the car maker with 25 per cent, plus one ordinary share — carrying voting rights — in Porsche, effectively giving them a blocking minority in the namesake brand.

Up to 113,875,000 preferred shares, carrying no voting rights, will be sold to investors over the course of the IPO.

Updated: September 29, 2022, 8:55 AM
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