Axa Equitable Raises $2.75 Billion in Biggest 2018 U.S. IPOBy
Insurer’s shares price at $20, short of $24-$27 range
Offering still tops Pagseguro Digital, iQiyi listings
Axa Equitable Holdings Inc., encompassing the American operations for French insurance giant Axa SA, fell almost $1 billion short of its targeted share sale in what was still the biggest U.S. initial public offering of the year.
Axa Equitable Holdings raised $2.75 billion, selling 137.25 million shares for $20 each. That was short of its targeted range of $24 to $27 apiece. The proceeds from the listing will help its French parent company fund its biggest-ever acquisition: a $15.3 billion takeover of XL Group Ltd.
The listing, which gives Axa Equitable a market value of about $11.2 billion, was the world’s second largest this year. It was surpassed only by Siemens Healthineers AG’s March IPO in Frankfurt, which raised 4.04 billion euros ($4.8 billion), according to data compiled by Bloomberg. In the U.S., Pagseguro Digital Ltd. sold $2.6 billion in stock in January and iQiyi Inc. sold $2.4 billion in March.
Axa Equitable Holdings includes Axa’s U.S. Life & Savings unit and a 64 percent stake in money manager AllianceBernstein Holding LP. Axa’s U.S. business was the third-largest seller of variable annuities in the U.S. last year, according to industry group Limra.
The company posted revenue of $12.5 billion last year, up 5 percent from 2016. Its net income was $1.3 billion in 2017, down 24 percent from the previous year.
— With assistance by Katherine Chiglinsky