German IT Company First to Go Public in Euros

Shares of hancke & peter IT service AG are expected to be quoted for the first time on the Frankfurt Exchange starting 25 January, and will be the first issue of a share denominated in Euros on the German market.

The initial price will be fixed under the bookbuilding procedure. The price spread will be between 12.70 and 14.70 Euros. The Aachen business founded in 1984 has successfully established itself on the market as an IT service provider.

Dr. Dieter Falke, board member of the West Deutsche Landesbank stated that a total of six million shares at a nominal value of 1 Euro would be offered, with a maximum placement volume of 1,625 million shares. The free float under the green shoe option would be up to 26 per cent.

Experts expect the DEM 92.8 billion (US$54.9 billion) German IT market volume to rise to approximately DEM 140 billion (US$83 billion) by the year 2003.

In five years, hancke & peter has had an annual growth rate of 25 percent. With sales of DEM 127 million and a staff of 310, the company is a full service operation, a direct partner of Compaq, HP, IBM and Toshiba, and working closely with Microsoft, Oracle, Novell and Autodesk software.

According to the board, the funds raised by the flotation would be used to finance regional expansion, the development of e-commerce and consultancy activities in particular. The target is to be among the top 10 IT service providers in Germany within three years, the firm said.

Juergen Drewes, executive director of Aachen’s Chamber of Commerce (Industrie-und Handelskammer), sees hancke & peter’s success as a reflection of the Aachen Region’s pre-eminence in e-business resources.

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