The Australian Securities Exchange (ASX) today announces a proposed new facility that will improve the pricing and allocation process for bookbuilds. ASX BookBuild is expected to be operational prior to the end of 2012, subject to regulatory approval.
Bookbuilds are one of the key mechanisms used by companies to price and allocate new securities issued as part of a capital raising such as a placement or an IPO. To help support this process, ASX will develop and operate a new electronic facility called ASX BookBuild using a pricing and allocation method based on the intellectual property of On-Market BookBuilds (OMB).
ASX BookBuild will add to the capital raising options for companies and for the first time will allow a bookbuild to be conducted electronically on-market using ASX technology. Companies using ASX BookBuild will continue to appoint a lead manager to act as their agent in the conduct of the offer of securities and to manage the bookbuild process. Any ASX Participant will be able to electronically submit bids on behalf of their eligible clients in ASX BookBuild. The price and allocations are determined by ASX BookBuild according to a defined set of rules. Settlement of those allocations occurs in the same manner as for any off-market bookbuild.
The benefits of ASX BookBuild include:
Greater price transparency throughout the bookbuild process;
Greater capital raising efficiency with lower discounts;
Broader broker participation with more investors gaining access to investment opportunities; and
Significant flexibility that allows companies and lead managers to reward early bidders, existing shareholders or expected long-term investors by setting the pricing and allocation parameters.
ASX Deputy CEO, Peter Hiom, said: "The ASX BookBuild initiative will improve the transparency and efficiency of raising capital in Australia, and strengthen our competitiveness as a regional centre for raising capital. ASX is determined that Australia should remain a leading market in which to list and raise capital, and is continuing to invest in its listings and issuer services to ensure it meets the needs of the 2,200 listed businesses that want to access capital to fund their growth."
OMB CEO, MB CEO, Ben Bucknell said: "ASX BookBuild will enable companies and lead managers to capture more of the available demand, while retaining sufficient control to ensure orderly pricing, respond to market conditions and reward key investors. It combines the most effective capital raising practices with principles of market integrity. This will produce better price discovery for companies and greater transparency and participation opportunities for all market participants."