Imperial Tobacco’s Logista Gains in First Day of Trading

Imperial Tobacco Group Plc’s Spanish logistics unit rose in its Madrid trading debut as it joins a line of Spanish companies that have wooed investors this year.

Shares of Cia. de Distribucion Integral Logista Holdings SA shares opened 1.9 percent higher at 13.25 euros. They traded 3.9 percent higher at 13.50 euros at 12:35 p.m. in Madrid. That values the company at about 1.8 billion euros ($2.4 billion). Imperial Tobacco sold the shares at 13 euros apiece, near the low end of its estimated price range.

Imperial Tobacco has said it plans to use the proceeds from the sale to reinvest in the business or reduce its 11.1 billion pounds ($19 billion) of net debt. The company said July 11 it was in talks with Reynolds American Inc. and Lorillard Inc. to acquire some assets and brands owned by the U.S. companies in the event of a merger between them.

Spanish IPOs have raised more than $5 billion in 2014, more than in the previous two years combined, as investors return to the region’s market amid signs of an economic recovery. Merlin Properties Socimi SA, a real estate investment trust, netted

1.25 billion euros in June and Applus Services SA, an inspection company for industries such as transport and energy, reaped 1.1 billion euros in May.

Bought by Imperial Tobacco in 2008 as part of the takeover of cigarette maker Altadis SA, Logista distributes goods to outlets such as bookshops, gas stations and convenience stores across southern Europe. The company posted sales of 1.01 billion euros in the year ended Sept. 30, Logista has said.

Imperial Tobacco, which makes Gauloises cigarettes, inherited a 59.6 percent stake in Logista at the time of the

12.6 billion-euro Altadis takeover and later bought the rest in a deal that valued the logistics company at 2.3 billion euros.

Proceeds of Imperial Tobacco’s sale, excluding an over-allotment option, were about 470.7 million euros.

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