Samsung BioLogics, a Samsung Group biosimilar arm, began receiving public subscriptions from retail investors Wednesday ahead of what market experts called one of South Korea's largest initial public offerings this year.
An initial response from retail investors was cool, although Samsung BioLogics drew a fervent response from foreign investors during road shows abroad.
Out of 16.5 million shares offered in the market, 3.3 million shares will go to retail investors for two days. The desired price was set at the upper end of 136,000 won (119 US dollars) per share that will fetch some 2.25 trillion won.
The IPO was set for November 10, with the market capitalization of BioLogics estimated at up to nine trillion won. The offering has been widely watched by foreign and domestic investors and experts since Samsung Electronics vice chairman Jay Y. Lee became a registered board member last week.
The tech giant, which has been reeling from a debacle caused by its fire-prone flagship smartphone, reported a 29.6 percent drop in its third-quarter operating profit.
For his smooth transfer of power from Samsung Group's bedridden patriarch Lee Kun-hee, the vice chairman is required to speed up corporate restructuring, starting with the share listing of BioLogics.
The country's largest family-run conglomerate has promised to nurture the biopharmaceutical business as its new growth engine.
BioLogics, which posted 1.9 trillion won in net profit in 2015, is the world's third-largest producer of biomedicines in terms of production capacity after Switzerland's Lonza Group and Germany's Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals.
The pharm company hopes to invest some 780 billion won of the proceeds in expanding its production capacity and 400 billion won in its unlisted subsidiary, Bioepis, which develops copied biotech drugs called biosimilars.
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