A man browses books inside a library in India. (Photographer: Dhiraj Singh/Bloomberg)

S Chand’s IPO Sees HNIs Subscribing 204 Times On Its Last Day

S Chand and Company Ltd.’s initial public offering (IPO) was subscribed more than 204 times by high net worth individuals on Friday after they largely stayed away for the first two days.

Qualified institutional buyers (QIBs) subscribed the portion set aside for them nearly 45 times while retail investors put in bids for six times the number of shares allocated to them, according to data provided by lead book manager Axis Capital Ltd.

S Chand’s shares on offer saw an overall subscription by 60 times. It’s the second company in the education sector to go for an IPO this year after coaching services provider CL Educate Ltd.

The company has set aside 50 percent of the shares on offer for QIBs, 35 percent for retail investors and 15 percent for high net worth individuals.

S Chand has set a price band of Rs 660-670 apiece. The Rs 729-crore offer is a combination of fresh issuance and offer for sale. Seven existing promoters and Everstone Capital are selling 20.2 percent of their pre-issue share capital, amounting to Rs 404 crore at the upper end of the price band. The company also raised 219 crore by allotting a total of 32.6 lakh shares to 15 anchor investors on Tuesday.

The Delhi-based company is 75 years old and mainly focusses on publication of educational content meant for professionals, schools – kindergarten to class 12 (K-12) and higher education. The publishing house, which gets most of its revenue from the school textbooks, is now looking to expand into the digital education space.

The company will be using 78.5 percent of the proceeds from the fresh issue, that is Rs 255 crore, to pare debt, which will bring down company’s total debt-to-equity to 0.3 times in the financial year 2017-18.