IPO demand accumulating in Turkey in advance of normalisation of markets says JPMorgan top executive

By bne IntelliNews August 2, 2019

JPMorgan Chase & Co anticipates that Turkey’s capital markets will return to life as the country’s inflation and interest rates decline, Mustafa Bagriacik, chief executive officer of the lender’s Istanbul unit, said in an interview with Bloomberg on August 2.

“IPO demand is accumulating in Turkey and when markets normalize, there should be initial public offerings, secondary public offerings and accelerated book buildings,” he said, adding: “Demand and risk appetite for Turkey will be there once predictability is there; because investors are generally underweight Turkey.”

Having become mired in economic difficulties following last year’s lira crash, Turkey has this year only seen three initial public offerings (IPOs), with a total worth of $23mn. Whether something like a steady and sustainable recovery is setting in is now the big question for investors mulling a return to the Turkish economy.

Bagriacik also reportedly said activity from Turkish banks is expected to start improving from September as lenders increase borrowing to bolster capital levels, while he anticipated new issuance from the corporate sector, though he declined to identify specific deals.

“Markets are waiting for a little bit of clarity on the M&A side. What I mean by clarity is to have predictability on macroeconomics, currency and growth. I expect we will see more investment from China, as part of their Belt and Road Initiative. They are long-term investors,” Bagriacik added.

The CEO also observed: “Profit and loss predictability of a company is very important for investors and it comes from growth and cash flow. In industries like logistics, health care and infrastructure, where you have hard-currency P&L, there will be more appetite from foreign investors.”

The challenge for the Turkish economy, said Bagriacik, would be about how quickly it could recover from its recession and reach 3%-4% annual growth. “As a nation, we should be able to create a recovery story without additional external financing, but we need to have the right structural reforms in place,” he noted.

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