What's this year looking like for IPO's?

There is a lot of speculation for the market in 2018 - with uncertainty around decisions in relation to Brexit. We were interested in IPO activity throughout 2017 and how this has set the market up for 2018.

Jump to the main content area


Global activity kicked off well in the first quarter of 2017, with a broad range of businesses being listed. There was a 92% rise on previous years’ activity, the most active Q1 since 2007. However, for the UK market, this quarter showed a decrease on last year’s numbers. The market was still uncertain on Brexit and what the after-effects would be.

Stats for Q1 of 2017

12 IPOs in the London Stock Exchange worth $1.1 billion

Most listings were in the Real Estate sector


Global IPO activity continued to be high with the number of listings starting to outpace 2016. Technology, industrials, and consumer products were the sectors that dominated this quarter.

For the UK, IPOs nearly doubled in comparison to those of the first quarter, but a large amount of proposed IPOs were still holding back. There was good news for the FTSE market, with companies trading 10% above their offer price as international investors took advantage of the weaker pound.

Stats for Q2 of 2017

21 IPOs in the London Stock Exchange worth $2.1 billion

Most listings were in the Energy sector


Global activity in this quarter was up 59% on 2016, with industrials the most active sector. At this point, 2017’s total IPO listings had already exceeded the entire number listed in 2016.

Q3 was also another active quarter for the UK.

Stats for Q3 of 2017

16 IPOs worth $1.7b illion

Technology sector was the most active sector


Global activity stalled during part of this quarter after weaker levels of activity in Asia. In contrast, the UK market ended on a high with another busy quarter.

Stats for Q4 2017

19 IPOs worth $4.7 billion

AIM = Total market value was 32% higher than December 2016

But what’s set for 2018?

EY have predicted that IPO activity in 2018 will start off relatively quietly but will ramp up by Q2. With IPOs looking to surpass those of 2017, they look to be a lot more diverse, and cross-border deals are still a major part of the global market. They also suggest that companies in the UK are likely to benefit due to the weakness of the pound and the relatively stable market. Dr Martin Steinbach from EY Global states that “everything is in place for an exceptional 2018”.

Companies such as O2 and Aston Martin are looking to list on the London Stock Exchange this year.


So, what do we think about IPO activity for 2018?

Although global IPO levels look set to continue on a high throughout 2018, we are still slightly sceptical as to whether the same can be said for the UK. With uncertainty around Brexit and how it will impact companies, we think that this is likely to have a negative impact on and defer the likelihood of companies looking to list. This will mean that 2018 is looking to continue at a steady pace for UK listings.

Companies already listed in the market will look to do well, as the continued steady market and a weak pound attract more and more investors.  

How can we help you?

Having worked with a number of companies who have listed and with the experience of working with over 100 PLCs, we have the expertise to help companies looking to list with their Corporate Branding, Corporate Reporting, Corporate Websites and general Corporate Communications. Finding solutions to communicate your stakeholder queries, we’re equipped to solve many of your communication needs. Our experienced teams can help craft your communications using industry legislation and guidance to help you to tell your story effectively.

To find out more about how we helped one of our most recent IPOs, take a look at the work we completed for Arix Bioscience

If you are looking to list and would like to talk about corporate communications, we would be delighted to help. Call, visit us or we’ll visit you.