Swedish oat milk brand Oatly prepares Nasdaq IPO

The plant-based brand is targeting a valuation of US$10bn and would start trading on Thursday

Swedish oat milk brand Oatly prepares Nasdaq IPO

Swedish oat milk brand Oatly (OTLY) is poised to list on Nasdaq on Thursday and will confirm its valuation later today.

The group is thought to be targeting a valuation of US$10bn, pricing shares at US$15-17 apiece.

READ: The ‘millennial’ stocks to watch as Oatly and Bumble IPOs take the market by storm

The IPO would raise proceeds of around US$1.4bn by placing 65mln American depositary shares and an extra 20mln shares from existing shareholders.

Oatly, which is owned by Havre Global AB, has enjoyed a boom in trading as consumers worldwide seek more sustainable alternatives to cow milk, which are also perceived to be healthier.

Headquartered in Malmö, Sweden, its oat-based milk and related products, such as yoghurt and ice cream, are sold in more than 20 countries globally.

It was founded in 1994 by food chemistry professor Rickard Oste and his brother Bjorn as a university spin-off, but only began to become popular internationally after 2012 when Toni Petersson joined as chief executive, stressing the positive environmental impact to drive up sales.

“We have a bold vision for a food system that’s better for people and the planet,” the company said in its IPO prospectus.

However, climate activists turned sour last year after a US$200mln (£157mln) cash call that involved Blackstone, a private equity firm headed by Trump donor Stephen Schwartzman, previously accused of having links to deforestation in the Amazon.

The sale of the US$200mln minority stake, which valued the firm at US$2bn, also involved celebrity investors such as Oprah Winfrey and Jay-Z and institutions such as Belgian investor Verlinvest, state-owned China Resources and Nordics venture capital firm Industrifonden.

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