Canadian listings on AIM continue steady pace with technology companies leading the way



    TORONTO, Aug. 15 /CNW/ - The number of Canadian Initial Public Offerings
(IPOs) on AIM, a market operated by the London Stock Exchange (LSE), continued
their steady pace in the second quarter of 2007, according to the Canadian AIM
IPO survey released today from PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC). There were three
new listings in the second quarter compared to two in the first quarter and on
par with three in the same quarter last year.
    "The continued listing activity of Canadian companies is indicative of
their solid interest in the AIM market as a good source for capital especially
in the technology sector," says Ari Sahakian, a Director with PwC's
Transaction Advisory Group.
    Overall, AIM IPO activity declined in the second quarter of 2007 (65)
compared to the second quarter of 2006 (89), according to the PwC IPO Watch
Europe Survey, Q2 2007. TSX activity also slowed in the second quarter of 2007
with only eight IPOs versus 18 in the same quarter of last year.
Interestingly, the TSX Venture showed an increase with 10 IPOs in Q2 2007 up
from five in the same quarter last year which suggests that the source and
size of placements is changing to markets like AIM and the Venture exchange.
    Of the three new AIM listings in Canada during Q2 2007, two were in the
Technology sector - Versatile Systems Inc. and Dragonwave Inc. The total
amount raised by these two Canadian companies was (pnds stlg)15.4 million, a
decrease over the prior quarter of (pnds stlg)70.0 million. The third listing
(Stratic Energy Corp.) was an introduction only and did not raise new capital.
    "We may be seeing a trend here with more and more technology companies
choosing to list on AIM," says Ben Kaak, PwC Partner, and National Technology
Practice Leader. "Not only is the AIM seen as an increasingly important
financing market for Canadian technology and media companies but a listing
also helps to raise the profile of Canadian companies in their European
markets."
    The total number of Canadian AIM listed companies slipped to 41 at the
end of June 2007, as six companies (all in the energy and mining sectors)
de-listed from the AIM exchange during the quarter, as they either moved to
the LSE Main Market or were acquired. Sahakian notes, "These de-listings from
AIM show that Canadian companies are growing or attracting the attention of
bigger players in their industry as takeover targets."
    The total market capitalization of Canadian AIM listed companies at
June 30, 2007 was (pnds stlg)5.4 billion, a decrease of 50% from (pnds
stlg)10.8  billion at March 31, 2007, primarily as a result of the de-listing
of large mining and energy companies during Q2 2007 including, Oilexco
Incorporated, First Quantum Minerals Limited and Yamana Gold Inc., who all
started trading on the LSE Main Market in the quarter and had a combined
market capitalization of (pnds stlg)5.1 billion at March 31, 2007.
    "We're seeing some interesting trends with the change in profile of
Canadian AIM listed companies," says Sahakian. "With the addition of Versatile
Systems Inc. and Dragonwave Inc., Technology & Media companies now total nine
and represent 22% of the total Canadian AIM listed companies at June 30, 2007,
second only to Mining at 41%, in terms of number of listings."
    The overall performance of the 41 Canadian AIM listed companies at
June 30, 2007, increased 24.8% during Q2 2007, with five out of the six
industry groups advancing. The top performing industry group was Mining at
34.4%, while the Financial Services sector declined 1.1%. The Technology &
Media sector advanced 24.6% during the quarter and 36.0% year to date.
    For more information and the full Canadian AIM IPO survey please contact
Carolyn Forest, carolyn.forest@ca.pwc.com, 416-814-5730 or visit
www.pwc.com/ca/aim.

    The Canadian PwC AIM Listing Services Group comprises a cross functional
team of Transaction Advisory, Global Capital Markets, Assurance and Tax
specialists who provide a broad range of services to Canadian companies and
their advisors in connection with AIM transactions, including:

    
    -   Preparations for becoming a public company;
    -   Advising on regulatory and admission issues;
    -   Undertaking business, financial and tax due diligence investigations;
        and
    -   Assisting with GAAP conversion projects.
    

    PricewaterhouseCoopers (www.pwc.com) provides industry-focused assurance,
tax and advisory services to build public trust and enhance value for its
clients and their stakeholders. More than 140,000 people in 149 countries
across our network share their thinking, experience and solutions to develop
fresh perspectives and practical advice. Now celebrating 100 years of
excellence in Canada, PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP (www.pwc.com/ca) and its
related entities have more than 4,700 partners and staff in offices across the
country.

    "PricewaterhouseCoopers" refers to PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP, an Ontario
limited liability partnership, or, as the context requires, the
PricewaterhouseCoopers global network or other member firms of the network,
each of which is a separate and independent legal entity.





For further information:

For further information: Carolyn Forest, PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP,
(416) 814-5730, carolyn.forest@ca.pwc.com

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