Aston Martin shares drop 6.5% on first day of public trading

Aston Martin launched publicly on the London Stock Exchange on Wednesday, and after an initial valuation of £4.3bn, shares were sold at £19. However, by lunchtime, these had dropped to as low as £17.75.

The company has gone bust seven times in the last 105 years, but there was still a lot of intrigue and much anticipation over the sale of shares. It is the first UK carmaker to sell shares publicly in years. They are most known for their association for the James Bond films.

Shares were launched on Wednesday on a conditional basis, which means it is introductory and available for a more limited period of trading. This is applied to all newly listed shares. Full trading begins on Monday.

It is thought that the sale will raise at least £1bn for the company, and they have a further number of shares to release if demand is strong, which could lead to 27% of the company being publicly traded.

Andy Palmer, chief executive, was excited for the future:

“We are delighted by the positive response we have received from investors across the world and are very pleased to welcome our new shareholders to the register.”

Aston Martin has moved to diversify under Palmer, who previously worked at Nissan, and have projects looking at electric flying cars, luxury homes in the US, and even personal submarines.

Part of its turnaround strategy strategy involved targeting female buyers – no easy task given the company has sold fewer than 4,000 cars to women in its 105-year history.

In August, Aston Martin reported half-year profits of £42m. They expect full-year sales for 2018 rise to between 6,200 and 6,400 units, and in the medium-term it aims to build nearly 10,000 in the 2020 calendar year.

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