South Korea Witnesses Increase in IPOs in 2023 Despite Economic Challenges

Seoul - In 2023, South Korea saw a 17 percent increase in the number of initial public offerings (IPOs), signaling a potential easing of economic challenges. Data from the Financial Supervisory Service (FSS) revealed that 82 companies debuted on the main Korea Composite Stock Price Index and the tech-heavy KOSDAQ markets last year, up from 70 in 2022.

According to Yonhap News Agency, the FSS data also highlighted a significant drop in the total funds raised through IPOs, which fell to 3.3 trillion won ($2.48 billion) from 15.6 trillion won in the previous period. The decrease was attributed to the absence of any major IPOs exceeding 1 trillion won in 2023, contrasting sharply with the previous year when LG Energy Solution Ltd.'s IPO alone garnered 12.7 trillion won. Despite the decline in funds raised, the competition ratio for IPO stocks increased to 925 to 1 in 2023 from 836 to 1 in 2022, and the prices of newly listed stocks closed an average of 72 percent higher on their first day of trading. By the end of last year, the prices of these stocks were 40 percent higher on average compared to their IPO prices, according to the FSS data.

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