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Australia’s APN Outdoor to offer up to A$349 mln in shares in IPO, says source-Reuters

(Reuters) – Australia’s APN Outdoor plans to sell up to A$349 million ($306 million) in shares in an initial public offering as Quadrant Private Equity sells down its stake in the digital billboard company, a source working on the deal told Reuters on Friday.

Quadrant has engaged investment bank UBS AG, which plans to lodge a prospectus with Australian authorities in the next week, said the source, who requested anonymity because of the market sensitivity of the matter.

The listing would give APN a market capitalisation of up to A$450 million. UBS has been conducting an investor roadshow for the listing but, at Quadrant’s request, has kept the timing flexible because of recent share market volatility, the source added.

Australia is headed for its biggest year of IPO activity ever, up more than 400 percent in the first nine months of 2014 over the same period last year, according to Thomson Reuters data, as company owners seek to capitalise on what has been until recently a strong share market.

But since reaching a record closing high in early September the market has lost about 8 percent, including nearly 2 percent on Friday, hit by reports of slowing demand for resources in China and an unexpected fall in German exports.

That is not expected to deter a listing by APN, the source said. The company is asking investors to buy up to 127 million shares at a price between A$2.55 and A$2.75 each.