Stock Exchange Sophomore IPO Hits Ceiling

By Kyaw Hsu Mon 20 May 2016

For the second time in as many months, the Yangon Stock Exchange (YSX) has hosted an initial public offering (IPO). Myanmar Thilawa Special Economic Zone Holdings on Friday followed First Myanmar Investment to become the second firm listed on the YSX; hungry for the new opportunity, investors drove the stock up 25 percent on its first day of trading.

Thilawa SEZ’s float price of 40,000 kyats (US$34.16) quickly soared to 50,000 kyats, where it hit the daily price ceiling and trading was suspended.

Myanmar Thilawa SEZ is a holding group that holds a major stake in the Thilawa Special Economic Zone 20 miles south of Rangoon that is home to factories, a deep sea port and housing complexes.

“Myanmar Thilawa SEZ Holdings is a very attractive company for investors,” said Thet Tun Oo, senior manager at YSX. “Businesses have already started operating there, unlike at other development zones, and I believe Thilawa will develop very quickly.”

While the opening day may seem like a good sign for Thilawa SEZ’s stock price, its predecessor on the bourse has already had a rough ride. FMI, YSX’s maiden listing, fell below its IPO price a few days after the initial wave of exuberance subsided and has remained 5,000 to 10,000 kyats below its peak ever since.

Thilawa SEZ offered over 3.8 million shares on Friday, which had been previously sold to investors through over-the-counter trading.