Kenvue’s stock opens 16% above where the upsized IPO priced, in the biggest deal since 2021
The newly minted shares of Kenvue Inc. were cheered in their Wall Street debut Thursday, as the Johnson & Johnson spinoff saw its stock open 16.0% above where the initial public offering was priced.
Kenvue , the parent of a number of household consumer brands, including Tylenol, Band-Aid, Listerine and Benadryl, said late Wednesday that it sold 172.8 million shares in the IPO, up from previous expectations of 151.2 million shares. The company raised $3.80 billion, as the IPO priced at $22 a share, which was at the higher end of the expected pricing range of between $20 and $23 a share.
With 1.87 billion shares outstanding after the IPO, the pricing valued the company at $41.08 billion. That made it the biggest IPO since late 2021.
The stock’s first trade on the New York Stock Exchange was at $25.53 at 12:47 p.m. Eastern, for 15.7 million shares. At the opening price, the company’s market capitalization was at $47.7 billion. It has added to gains since the open, as it was 19.5% above its IPO price in afternoon trading to boost the company’s market cap to $49.1 billion.
“With over $2 billion in cash flow and a healthy 3.7% dividend, this is exactly the type of deal that works in a tough environment,” said Bill Smith, co-founder of Renaissance Capital.
Kenvue has reported net income of $2.09 billion on sales of $14.95 billion for the fiscal year ended Jan. 1, 2023, compared with net income of $2.03 billion on sales of $15.05 billion the year before.
Shares of J&J (JNJ), which owns 1.72 billion Kenvue shares, or 91.9% of the shares outstanding, slipped 0.4% in afternoon trading.
Kenvue’s debut comes at a time when the IPO market had all but dried up, and investors haven’t been showing shares of recent IPOs much love. The Renaissance IPO exchange-traded fund (IPO) has lost 7.1% over the past three months while the S&P 500 has slipped 1.6%.