Fortunes improved for investors in companies on the London Stock Exchange’s Alternative Investment Market (AIM) market, aimed at mid-capitalization or growth companies. Although the number of companies listed for trading on AIM has fallen every year since 2007, in 2012 the decline was only 4%, compared to a 16% decline in 2009 which was the fastest fall.
In addition, the reasons for companies leaving were mostly positive, according to a report on Reuters citing a report from Deloitte. Richard Thornhill, capital markets partner at Deloitte, is quoted as saying: “There are good reasons to be confident about the market in 2013.”
He said: “During the time of the financial crisis … the principal reasons why companies were leaving the list were negative. Either they no longer perceived that the market offered them value … or the economic climate forced them to de-list. The situation in 2012 has been very different, with the driving force behind companies leaving the list being transactions which have consistently realized value for shareholders.”
By the end of November 2012, 65 companies had been listed on AIM. Of these 44 had raised money and investors had seen an average gain of 26% since the listings. However, 113 companies had left AIM in the period, of which 41 were acquired, 17 were subject to reverse take-overs and 3 transferred to the LSE’s main market. Companies which were acquired received an average premium of 53% to the price at which the shares closed on the day before the acquisition, according to Reuters.