Newcomers find mixed response

THE FLOTATION of two newcomers on the stock market via intermediary offers has received a mixed response from investors.

Dorling Kindersley Holdings, the reference books publisher, announced that its share offer at 165p each was five times oversubscribed.

However, a fifth of shares offered by JD Wetherspoon, the pubs operator, at 160p each were undersubscribed, and have been placed with institutions.

Under an intermediaries offer, investors can only apply for shares through a stockbroker.

The two companies had already conditionally placed their shares with institutions. Kindersley received applications for more than 42 million shares, compared with 7 million offered.

As a result, the applications have been scaled down, favouring smaller investors. Those applying for 5 million and more will receive 10 per cent of the amount applied for. Applications for between 2 million and 5 million shares will be alloted about 15 per cent, but applications for less than 2 million will receive 22 per cent.