Investors seeking returns from companies debuting on the stock market, known as initial public offerings, have endured a torrid time in recent years, with a range of high-profile companies coming to market and producing sharply declining share prices.

At the same time, there has been a cyclical decline in the quantity of new companies IPO’ing globally and, in the UK, a structural issue as domestically focused businesses choose to list in the US, as they anticipate being able to achieve a higher valuation in that market at a time when data shows consistent and persistent outflows from UK equity funds.

Tom Slater jointly runs the £10.9bn Scottish Mortgage investment trust, of which around 30 per cent is deployed in companies not yet quoted on any stock market.

He says there are two reasons why IPOs globally have been scarce in recent times.

Slater says many company owners are in no hurry to list their businesses as they believe being publicly listed comes with pressure to pursue a strategy that is more short termist in nature.

He adds that several companies in which he is invested may be inclined to pursue an IPO in the near term, but feel that “market conditions” have not been conducive to this, as equity markets generally have declined.

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