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All eyes on new Kennedy Wilson €1.1bn property unit


London Stock Exchange

London Stock Exchange

London Stock Exchange

FULL trading of shares in Kennedy Wilson's bigger-than-expected stock market-listed property venture will kick off tomorrow.

Kennedy Wilson European Real Estate raised £910m (€1.1bn) from a base of mostly US investors in a successful initial public offering (IPO) on Tuesday.

The stock was issued with an initial price of £10 per share and is likely to be heavily followed in Ireland.

Kennedy Wilson is a prolific investor in Irish property, and loans and assets here are among the targets for the new listed fund – alongside an initial focus on Spain and the UK.

The size of Kennedy Wilson's European IPO is well above the £750m the US firm had indicated it was seeking from the flotation.

Kennedy Wilson itself contributed £90m to the stock market deal, partly through a contribution of property assets. That includes £3m from the firm's management.

A group of "corner stone" investors, who contributed £630m to the share issue, includes Bank of Ireland shareholders Canada's Fairfax and US-based Fidelity, as well as Franklin Advisers, a unit of Franklin Templeton, the US firm famous for its multi-billion euro bet on Irish bonds during the depths of the crisis.

Davy Stockbrokers acted as "joint bookrunner" and Bank of Ireland as lead manager on the deal.

Limited trading over the past two days saw some volatility in the stock ahead of admission to the premium listing segment of the London Stock Exchange's official list tomorrow.

Shares rose to £11 each on Tuesday, before dropping back to £10.92 each yesterday.

Trading in the stock on London's "main market" and the commencement of unconditional dealing is expected to kick off from tomorrow morning.

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