Traders read periodicals and sleep at the Shanghai Futures Exchange in Shanghai, China (Photographer: Nelson Ching/Bloomberg)  

Two Big IPOs Wake 2019’s Market From a Sleepy Start

(Bloomberg) -- After a slow start to the year in IPO-land, things are finally starting to heat up.

Companies detailed plans to raise at least $6 billion in global initial public offerings on Monday, more than two thirds of the total announced previously this year, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

Ride-hailing giant Lyft Inc. aims to raise as much as $2.1 billion in its U.S. listing, while Italian payments firm Nexi SpA is targeting a Milan IPO of up to 2.7 billion euros ($3.1 billion). Twelve other companies set terms for their offerings Monday, including Precision Biosciences Inc. and Tufin Software Technologies Ltd., the data show.

It’s one of the first signs that 2019 could yet live up to its billing as a bumper year for going public, particularly among technology firms. Uber Technologies Inc. is set to follow smaller rival Lyft out the door in the second quarter, while office chat software maker Slack Technologies Inc. and food-delivery app Postmates Inc. are also considering listings.

Combined, those four companies could add more than $150 billion of market cap to global indexes, based on their last private valuations or how much they’re expected to be valued at in an IPO.

As of Friday, just 22 U.S. IPOs had raised $1.6 billion so far in the first quarter, the worst start since 2016. In Europe, Volkswagen AG on March 13 cancelled a stock sale of its truck division that could have raised as much as $3 billion, a decision that one head of trading said could “spoil the mood,” for other IPO-bound companies in the region.

While Nexi’s and Uber’s listing are set to come after the start of April, Lyft’s at least will help bolster the first-quarter numbers. The San Francisco-based company is planning to price its shares on March 28 and start trading the following day.

©2019 Bloomberg L.P.