Leading Polish medical products manufacturer HTL-Strefa SA has decided to postpone its plan for an initial public offering (IPO) on the Warsaw Stock Exchange because of volatile market conditions.
It was in September that HTL-Strefa, the world's leading producer of lancing instruments used by diabetes patients to check blood-sugar levels, confirmed it would float shares by the end of October with an offering worth up to 46.6 million euros.
The company planned to sell new shares and existing ones held by one of its shareholders – a fund managed by Sweden-based private equity firm EQT Partners.
But, earlier this month, despite “a positive reception” from Polish and international investors, Warsaw-based HTL-Strefa suspended the share offering.
“We plan to continue investor education and monitor the market in order to pick the most favourable window for a launch of the IPO,” CEO Tomasz Walesa said in a statement.
The two-stage IPO involves a primary tranche of newly issued HTL-Strepa shares valued at around 46.6 million euros designed to repay, along with other available funds, part of its existing debt. A second tranche will comprise ordinary shares offered by the selling shareholder Nive II Sarl, controlled by the fund EQT V Ltd., advised by EQT Partners, HTL-Strepa revealed last month.
HTL-Strepa, formed in 2000, was formerly listed on the Warsaw Stock Exchange. But it delisted the year after the firm was acquired by EQT V Ltd which was at the end of 2009. EQT group holds a 99.5 percent stake in the medical products manufacturer.
Last year, the Polish company, with a global market share of 46 percent for safety lancets and 15 percent for personal lancets, recorded a core profit of 25 million euros on annual sales of 64 million euros. It sells 2.5 billion lancets and pen needles per year.
The firm operates two plants in the Łodź Special Economic Zone, the main one at Łęczyca and an assembly unit at Ozorków where it invested 10 million euros in 2010.
Since then, HTL-Strepa has continued to develop new products and to undertake expansion projects at Łęczyca. It is completing the latest program, which included the addition of a new 3.85 million euro warehouse, expansion of its product range and markets with a 1.4 million euro project and a new 979,000 euro product launch.
These schemes have led HTL-Strepa to create a total of 32 more jobs at its Łęczyca operation.