India’s Starbucks rival sees solid demand for $177 mln IPO: Reuters

(Reuters) India’s biggest coffee chain operator Coffee Day Enterprises received nearly twice as many orders for its up to $177 million initial public offering before the Friday deadline as investors sought to buy into a rapidly growing cafe culture.

The IPO, the biggest in India in nearly three years, would value Coffee Day at as much as $1 billion. The company is backed by private equity firm KKR & Co and counts Starbucks Corp’s India joint venture as its main rival.

“The pricing was pretty fair and that got the institutional demand going,” said an investor whose fund bought shares, and who declined to be named as he was not authorised to speak to the media.

As of 1030 GMT, Coffee Day had received bids for 45.7 million shares, more than the 25.8 million shares on offer, according to exchange data. Books close at 1130 GMT.

The strong demand for the IPO contrasts with the overall weakness in the stock market caused by China’s economic slowdown and concerns about global liquidity. The broader NSE index is 9.7 percent lower than a record high hit in March.

Investors see potential in India’s cafe market which is worth 18.2 billion rupees and growing at 20 percent annually, according to consultancy Technopak, as more younger, urban consumers opt for cappuccinos over tea.

Coffee Day Enterprises was selling shares at between 316 rupees and 328 rupees each. The listing is set to debut on Nov. 2 and would be the biggest since Bharti Infratel Ltd’s $751 million IPO in December 2012.

Earlier this week, Coffee Day announced it had raised 3.34 billion rupees from “cornerstone” IPO investors, including Blackrock.

The Coffee Day offer is set to be followed by InterGlobe Aviation Ltd ‘s $400 million IPO on Oct. 26.

But the IPO pipeline will thin after this deal, as volatile global markets and tepid performance at home scare off potential candidates.