MOSCOW, March 4, 2015 /CNW/ - Top managers from Ulmart, Russia's leading e-commerce company, set out to New York City this week to meet with representatives of two of the world's leading stock exchanges: the NYSE and the NASDAQ.
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The purpose of the trip is to determine which exchange will be the best fit for Ulmart as it readies itself for a placement in early 2016. Visits to London and Hong Kong stock exchanges will follow in the coming months. The goal is to make an announcement by mid to end-Summer.
Ulmart top management already visited the Moscow stock exchange in November of last year-a dual listing is a possibility for the company.
While e-commerce leaders like Alibaba and JD.com have chosen the US over Hong Kong and London, the US as a choice for placement is not a done-deal for Ulmart.
Dmitry Kostygin, Ulmart's majority shareholder and chairman of the board offered the following analysis: "The size of the overall valuation will really dictate a lot in regards as to where we place. If it is large enough, say several times sales, then we think London might be a better fit as there is a tendency for continental investors to be bullish on larger listings. A smaller one, less than one time sales, might lead to the US as smaller listings there are quite well-received."
Despite a slowing-economy and a tense geo-political situation, a comfort zone has returned and many investors are again buying into Russian stocks because of their deflated prices and thanks to a fairly stable macro-economic situation in comparison to many members of the European Union.
"Retail is a long game. E-commerce is longer and Russia is even longer still. None of the three are going to go away just because of what is going on. Oil will rebound and the Russian-Ukrainian conflict will calm down considerably and very quickly money ear-marked for Russia, still a leading emerging market, will find good deals. Ulmart happens to be the best deal going in private enterprise and it's placement be the next big thing in e-commerce," commented Brian Kean, the company's head of communications and investor relations.
The offering, which could raise as much as $1.5 billion, will be a primary one as Ulmart plans to expand its three-tiered fulfillment center infrastructure by an additional 1 million square meters.