Italian trade fair group IEG takes fresh look at IPO-sources

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MILAN (Reuters) – Trade fair organizer Italian Exhibition Group (IEG) is sounding out investors for a possible stock market listing after a previous attempt failed in December due to unfavorable markets, two market sources said on Friday.

After a difficult 2018, Milan’s main stock index has gained more than 10% since the beginning of the year and Italian payments group Nexi went public in April in one of Europe’s biggest initial public offerings (IPOs) this year.

Global coordinators for the IEG’s IPO have sent investors new research reports on the group and an offer could be launched in the next few weeks, the sources said.

Asked about the project, the company said that “at the moment there are no firm plans and no final decision has been taken.”

IEG is looking to float up to 35-40% of its capital, according to one research report seen by Reuters. It would partly sell existing shares and partly issue new ones to raise cash to expand, including through acquisitions.

In November 2018, the Italian group set a price range for its IPO of between 3.70-4.20 euros per share, valuing the company at up to 145.6 million euros once the IPO and the capital increase were concluded.

IEG, which organizes conferences worldwide and has its main hubs in the cities of Rimini and Vicenza, had revenues of 160 million euros last year and a core profit of 31 million euros.

Reporting by Elisa Anzolin; Editing by Elaine Hardcastle

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